When you go through a divorce, one of the primary issues you’ll have to decide upon is property division. Understanding how Florida looks at property division is key to ensuring that you receive a fair reward and that you have what you need to begin a new chapter of your life. Here’s what you need to know about property division in Florida.
What is Equitable Distribution?
Florida uses equitable distribution guidelines to split up property and assets between two divorcing individuals. What this means is that Florida attempts to split property and assets 50/50. However, this can take many different forms. Couples with two homes may each get a home, or a couple with one home may sell the home and split the profits. Or, one individual may take the home and the other may take assets that have approximately the same value as the home.
Is Distribution Ever Unequal?
In some cases, equitable distribution may not take place. For example, this can occur in cases where both spouses agree on distribution that is not equal, or when one spouse has to care for a disabled child. Other cases where property may be distributed unequally could include situations where one spouse is clearly unable to live independently, such as in cases where one spouse does not speak English well and cannot work, or has not worked in many years due to being a household caretaker.
What is Marital Property?
Equitable distribution only applies to marital property. Property or assets that belonged to one spouse before the marriage will be awarded to that spouse upon divorce. This is especially true when a prenuptial agreement is in place. Marital property is property that was purchased during the marriage. Most people consider this to be houses and cars; however, marital property can be considered anything that was bought during the marriage. Furniture and electronics, like computers and televisions, are considered marital property as well.
When to Contact a Divorce Lawyer
Before going through the process of property division, it is critical that you consult with an experienced divorce lawyer in order to establish your rights. How the marital property is divided plays a significant role in your ability to move forward after the divorce and whether you’ll be facing financial struggles. Contact Mindi Lasley, P.A. for a consultation to discuss your legal needs and to find out where you stand when it comes to divorce and property division in Florida. Call now at (813) 873-9047.