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Property Division

In most states when couples divorce, they have to decide on how their property is going to be divided. In order to determine property division, it’s usually best to have the help of a divorce attorney or mediator, rather than leaving it in the hands of a judge. It’s only when couples can’t agree on the property division that a property dispute is given over to the court. And because each state has different rules in regard to division of property, when the court decides on property division, it’s either considered “Community Property” or “Equitable Distribution.”

Community Property

Certain states such as Alaska, Arizona, California, Idaho, Louisiana, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Washington, Wisconsin and Puerto Rico are “Community Property” states, which means all property of a married person is classified as community property, which is property owned equally by both spouses. Separate property of one spouse includes gifts and inheritances that were given to one spouse before they were married. Property purchased with separate funds of one spouse remains that spouse’s separate property. “Community Property” is usually divided equally between spouses, while each spouse keeps his or her separate property. “Community Property” may include all earnings during marriage and everything acquired with those earnings.

Equitable Distribution

In all other states, the assets and earnings that have been accumulated during a marriage are divided fairly, but not necessarily equally and are called “Equitable Distribution.” Generally speaking, often two thirds of the assets go to the person who was the higher wage earner and one-third to the other partner. So when it comes to property division, it does not mean an actual physical division, but instead the court will award each spouse a percentage of the total value of the property. It’s always best if people involved in the divorce come to an amicable agreement. However if there’s a disagreement about the property, trying to work out an arrangement that is fair is always the best way to go. For example, some couples sell the marital property so that they can divide the proceeds.

Business Ownership Property Division

Another aspect of property division comes under the heading of business ownership property division. What that means is if one spouse owned a business before the marriage, it remains his or her separate property after the marriage, although a portion of it may be considered community property if the business grew in value during the marriage. And if both spouses worked at developing the business, it can also become community property. If separate property is joined with community property during the marriage, it may also become community property, either in part or entirely. A lot depends on the circumstances of the situation.

About the Divorce Attorneys at Straight Divorce

When dealing with family law and divorce issues, a divorce attorney can help make the transition a little smoother. Making the divorce process as simple as possible, the divorce lawyers at Straight Divorce are available for consultation by filling out the free divorce case review or by calling us at 1 (877) 420-6657.
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