- What is Equitable Distribution in Virginia Divorce Law?
- “What About My Engagement Ring?” Issues of Personal Property Division in Divorce
- Protecting Your Personal Property in a Divorce
- Classification of Property in Virginia Divorce Practice | ShounBach!
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The debt? In a divorce, all respective assets are identified, valued, and allocated between the parties — this can range from bank accounts to vehicles, businesses to real estate.
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Any property that was acquired prior to your marriage or acquired by separate gift or inheritance during the marriage from anyone other than your spouse is considered separate property. Proving property is separate may be difficult, so if you believe that you or your spouse have items of separate property, you should make your attorney aware of this as early in the process as possible.
Big or little, pricey or inexpensive, anything that was acquired during the marriage by either party or both parties together — regardless of whose credit card it went on or whose name is on the title — is presumed to be marital property. Part marital and part separate property is classified as hybrid property in a Virginia divorce.
What is Equitable Distribution in Virginia Divorce Law?
Common examples of this include a home purchased during the marriage where the down payment came from one or both parties' pre-marital savings, or an IRA with contributions both before and after the marriage. In general, the party seeking to classify property as hybrid has the burden of proving this.
The last classification is the hybrid property one. Hybrid property is a mixture of separate and marital. The court is not required to divide up your property This is not a presumption in Virginia; it is in other states.
“What About My Engagement Ring?” Issues of Personal Property Division in Divorce
What the court does, instead, is balances several factors that include the age, physical and mental conditions of the parties, the decisions made during the parties as to who was going to work outside of the home, who is going to work inside the home, and tax consequences to the parties concerning dividing up of the property. In the end, the court will balance these factors and then make an equitable distribution.
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- Division of Marital Property in Virginia.
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How the issue of equitable distribution effects the divorce is dependent on each case and the route that the litigants are choosing to take. If the parties agree they want to come together and draft an agreement determining how their property is to be divided, then they can do that without any implications from the court.
Marital property is generally defined as any property or assets obtained throughout the marriage. Separate property is not subject to distribution. However, if your spouse disputes your claim that something is separate property, you will have to prove otherwise. The best way to accomplish this is through documented paperwork. If you do not have such documentation and you and your spouse cannot agree to, it will be up to the court to distinguish what is marital property and what is separate property, then distribute it equitably.
Protecting Your Personal Property in a Divorce
In some cases, it will be necessary to have an appraiser determine the value of assets. There are some circumstances in which the court will make an exception to equitable distribution. For example, if your spouse wastefully dissipated assets, the court would likely divide assets and property in a way that adequately compensated you for such actions.