On behalf of Ronald H. Kauffman, P.A. posted in Equitable Distribution on Sunday, July 15, 2012.

Equitable distribution, the dividing up of marital property, should be done equally. But there are reasons for a court to treat assets differently. One reason is a lengthy separation. A new study shows that about 79% of married couples who separate, end up getting divorced.

“Separation is very common and is more common than immediate divorce,” said researcher Dmitry Tumin of Ohio State University at a presentation at the annual meeting of the Population Association of America, which ended Sunday. “Most separations last one year or less, but a few drag on a decade or more before ending in divorce. Other separations stay unresolved.”

Lengthy separations can have a significant impact on equitable distribution, and for good reasons. In separations which last several years, your house or business may have appreciated in value significantly (or depreciated) or you may have accumulated stock and other assets. While the general rule is that marital property should be distributed equally, trial courts can consider various factors to distribute properties differently.

Dividing marital property seems simple enough, just divide by two! However, the more knowledgeable you become, the better prepared you will be to resolve your case fairly and amicably. For this, and other reasons, it is always recommended to consult with an experienced, board certified attorney in these matters.

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