Don’t Get Left Out in the Cold in Your Divorce Settlement
So you’ve reached the point of no return in your marriage and now all that’s left to figure out is the settlement. Of course, when it comes to settling a divorce, that’s where things tend to usually get very complicated, and in many instances extremely combative. Property division is a hot-button issue in almost any divorce, which is understandable since both parties want to be sure that they get their fair share of the marital property. After all, they accumulated these things together, so why should one party walk away with much more than the other?
Indiana law calls for the equitable distribution of property when a couple divorces. That does not mean that things are necessarily divided equally. It just means that the property needs to be divided fairly. So what exactly does fair mean when it comes to property division and how is fairness determined? That is a tough question to answer, which is why so many divorce cases turn ugly.
One thing that needs to be determined before the property can be divided is the difference between marital property and separate property. Marital property consists of anything the couple acquired together during marriage. On the other hand, separate property is anything that one spouse already owned before the marriage, or that he or she received via inheritance or gift during the marriage. However, just because property is divided into these two groups that does not mean it will be handed out in the exact same manner.
If a couple in Fort Wayne can’t come to an agreement on their own then they will have to go to court and have a judge determine how their assets will be split up. In that case, a judge could decide to divide the couple’s property in any way he or she deems as fair. That means it might not matter who acquired what and when, so long as the judge thinks the property division is fair and equitable.
Another important step in the property division process is assigning value to a couple’s assets. Usually the couple will take care of this step, but if they are unable to agree on the numbers, then the court will do this also. In some cases spouses choose to have certain items appraised in order to determine the true value of their assets. Lastly, after the assets have been designated as marital or separate property and received a value, spouses can choose to divide the actual property or they could also choose to sell their property and split the proceeds.
Going through the property division process is usually not easy, which is why it’s so important to have the help of an experienced Fort Wayne family law attorney on your side. Don’t get taken in your settlement. If you need help with your divorce and property division then contact The Bellinger Law Office today at 260-428-2214.