One of the main considerations when filing for divorce is the division of assets. New York is an equitable distribution state when it comes to marital property. I should point out that equitable is not the same as equal. It means each spouse owns the income that they earned during the marriage. It also means that you have the right to manage property that is under your name alone. Taking effect in 1980, the equitable distribution marital assets legislation has changed over time but the fact remains that it is the division of all marital property. Yet not all property in a marriage is marital. There is also property owned by the individual called separate property. An experienced lawyer can be a tremendous asset in determining what is marital and what is separate property.
What Qualifies As Separate Property
Common examples of separate property include the following:
- Property owned prior to marriage
- Income received from a personal injury
- Gifts from someone other than a spouse
Common Examples Of Marital Property
These can encompass nearly anything, including the following:
- Retirement plans
- Business assets
- Real estate
- Stocks and bonds
- Cars and other property of value
This property division cannot take place until the couple files for divorce or pursues a valid separation agreement. So if a member of the couple is contesting the divorce or separation, marital assets will not be distributed.
I Work With Experts
Determining the worth of assets is an important part of the divorce and distribution process. While I often perform this duty as your attorney and representative, I sometimes work with experts who range from CPAs to tax accountants to appraisers of real estate or other assets, particularly if the other party is not perceived to be acting in an honest manner.
Call Me If You Feel That Your Spouse Is Not Being Honest About Their Assets
My office is located in the heart of Garden City. Call 516-350-5074. I can also be easily reached by using my handy Contact page. Let’s set up an initial consultation at your earliest convenience.