Questions About Splitting Property In A Divorce

Are you about to go through a divorce but are worried about how your property will be split up? Here is what you need to know about how it will be done.

What Is Community Property?

If you live in a state that has community property laws, know that all money earned and items purchased up until your divorce is finalized is considered community property. Items that you purchased before the marriage or items that you inherited during the marriage would be considered individual property under the law. 

Will Property Be Split 50/50?

In an ideal situation, community property is split as evenly as possible to guarantee that it is fair to both parties. However, it does not always work out that way. Many items need to be appraised to estimate their value, and items may not be split exactly down the middle. In addition, judges can make decisions that will disproportionately split community property as well.

Why Would A Judge Split Assets Disproportionately?

There are many factors that go into how a judge will make their decisions about splitting community property. First of all, they are going to consider how each person is able to support themselves after the divorce. More community property may be given to a person that will have a harder time supporting themselves and needs those items. A judge also considers if either person did something wrong to cause the divorce and should receive less as a result. Another thing that is considered is if one person decided to spend a lot of the money from joint bank accounts during the divorce process, and the judge will make things even by splitting the property in a way that isn't 50/50.

How Are Bigger Assets Divided?

One problem you'll likely run into is how to divide a home, especially if it has not already been paid off. If couples do not want to keep the house, they can sell it and split the proceeds from the sale. However, it gets complicated when one person wants to keep the house. The home could be refinanced under one person's name, with money given to the other spouse to essentially buy out their half. There may also be an arrangement for the one spouse to make payments to the other over time to gradually buy out their share of the home. Either way, it can become complicated due to it being such an expensive asset. 

Contact a divorce lawyer to learn more.