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Prioritize equitable, not equal, distribution during divorce

On Behalf of | Mar 21, 2023 | Divorce

It is common to have concerns regarding what will happen to your marital property when you divorce. You may wonder how your decision to end your marriage will affect your financial health and other aspects of your life. You may find it necessary to fight for your fair share of all marital property. Marital property includes anything bought, collected, accumulated, or earned over the course of the marriage, and you have a rightful claim to your portion. You will benefit from knowing what counts as marital property.

Many people facing divorce assume that they have a claim to half of all marital property. In reality, equal distribution of assets is not always possible or really what’s in the best interests of either spouse. Instead of fighting for an equal share of your assets, it may be better to instead focus on an equitable share of your marital assets.

What does equitable distribution mean?

During a divorce, there must be a division of the property owned by the two spouses. While it may seem like it’s best to simply split everything down the middle, you may find it better to instead focus on equitable distribution of marital assets. Equitable distribution of assets is a way to divide marital property that focuses more on what is fair and reasonable. Courts typically prefer to divide assets equitably, or you and the other spouse may choose this approach if you opt to negotiate the terms of your divorce agreement out of court.

Equitable division takes into account the value of all assets, tax implications for retaining certain assets, and more when deciding how to divide marital property. For example, you may retain the family home, but your spouse may retain a larger portion of retirement assets. When making decisions or seeking a specific outcome, you will benefit from considering the additional costs of certain choices, such as tax penalties, upkeep costs, and more.

Seeking the best future after your divorce

Your financial interests are at stake during your divorce. Whether you will resolve property division matters in court, or you will negotiate the terms of your final order on your own, you will benefit from understanding equitable distribution, and your property rights. It will be helpful to focus on what will make the most sense long-term instead of making decisions based on how you feel in the moment.