Palatka Asset Division Lawyer Acting On Your Behalf
Dividing assets during a divorce is not an easy task. Rarely do both sides agree on how to equitably divide property and assets that were gathered during the course of a marriage. Every Palatka asset division attorney at Douglas Law Firm is ready to help you walk through this legal maze.
Many people do not realize that most everything that accrues during their marriage, regardless of whose name may be on the title, or who is responsible for obtaining the asset. Of course, like most things, there are exceptions, such as inheritances, but even these can be subject to claims of comingling or gifting, which could turn those inherited assets into marital assets.
Either way, “equitable” does not always mean equal, and there are many factors a court can consider in deciding how to separate your marital estate, including your personal belongings, vehicles, retirement, and even your home and business.
The legal team at Douglas Law Firm can help. You can rely on the experience of your Palatka asset division lawyer to guide you through these sometimes- complicated issues and get you on the path to financial and personal freedom.
Florida’s Equitable Distribution System Explained by a Palatka Asset Division Lawyer
Property distribution is often one of the central legal issues in Florida divorce cases, along with questions about alimony, child support, and child custody. The property often involved includes homes, savings accounts, and other assets, as well as a variety of debts.
Florida operates under an equitable distribution system in which the end goal is “fairness.” Although that may often mean a 50-50 split among divorcing spouses, judges have leeway to approve other arrangements. Because assets like homes, cars, and other physical property cannot be actually cut in half, one spouse is often required to buy out the opposing party's interest in a certain piece of property or to offset it by giving up his or her rights in other assets.
Fortunately, Florida law gives divorcing spouses that power to resolve many of these issues through mutual, negotiated agreement instead of leaving them largely up to a judge. A Palatka asset division lawyer at Douglas Law Firm can help you effectively navigate the divorce process by seeking to reach such an agreement.
Although not possible in all cases, divorcing spouses can go a long way in efficiently unwinding their marriages by committing to work together to reach a marital separation agreement. The document details the terms of the divorce and is legally binding once approved by a judge.
What Is Considered Marital Property?
The first step in resolving property distribution issues is determining what property needs to be divided. Courts typically require divorcing spouses to provide a detailed listing of property and other assets, including business holdings, investment accounts, and joint ventures with other partners.
Marital property generally refers to all of the assets to be divided among the spouses in the event of a divorce. That does not necessarily include all of the assets that either or both spouses own at the time of the split.
Marital property typically includes all of the assets obtained by one or both spouses during the course of the marriage. It also includes any “enhancements” in the value of certain non-marital assets obtained by one spouse prior to the marriage. That often arises in situations in which one spouse contributes to a business previously owned by the other spouse during the marriage.
Retirement plans can raise complex legal issues that are best resolved with a Palatka asset division lawyer. Generally, any money allotted to a retirement plan or earned prior to the marriage is considered marital property. Any retirement savings accumulated after the marriage is considered marital property.
Palatka Asset Division Attorney Explains What Happens to Your House During a Divorce
The family home is often the most substantial asset for divorcing spouses, which can make dividing the property complicated.
Generally, a home will be treated as marital property if it were purchased by one or both of the spouses during the course of the marriage. Because the home cannot be physically split, a court may order one spouse to buy out the other spouse’s interest in the property or offset that interest with other assets. If neither of those options is feasible, the spouses may be forced to sell the home and split the proceeds.
A spouse may also be entitled to some interest in a home purchased by the other spouse before the marriage in some situations. This most often occurs in scenarios where the other spouse contributed to increases in the value of the home, either through the person’s active efforts or the use of marital funds.
How a Palatka Asset Division Lawyer Can Help
It is important that anyone considering a divorce in Florida or grappling with property division issues consult an experienced Palatka asset division lawyer.
A divorce attorney can play a vital role in helping you determine which assets qualify as marital or non-marital property and in making that case to a judge. The lawyer can also make a compelling argument as to how marital property should be split.
In some cases, a lawyer plays a key role in assisting spouses in resolving equitable distribution issues through a negotiated settlement. This option allows the spouses to decide for themselves how their assets will be split, instead of leaving the decision to a judge.
Contact a Palatka Asset Division Attorney Today to Learn More
To learn more about how a Palatka asset division attorney can help you and your family, contact us online or call 800-705-5457 for a free consultation. Douglas Law Firm has offices in Palatka, Orange Park, St. Augustine, and Jacksonville.