New York Property Division Lawyers
The demise of a relationship is always a difficult experience. When that also includes splitting up property, things can become both more complicated and also more emotionally charged. In some scenarios, the couple can draft a plan and everything goes off smoothly. On the other hand, the interaction can become contentious, plans fail, and the process is more difficult. The issue for you is that there is usually no way to tell how it will go until you’re in the midst of it. That is why it is so critical for you to retain a New York Property Division Lawyer long before things go sour.
The Value of Premarital Counseling
Undergoing marriage counseling prior to your wedding day is an important component of having a strong marriage. In the past, marriage counseling was a long and drawn out process. These days, you can have convenient online sessions with your future spouse before getting married.
An obligatory part of the discussion in this counseling should be your finances. There are too many people who avoid discussing their personal finances before getting married. This is a major issue that a lot of people have to deal with. Now is the time to start laying out a plan for your future lives together with your money.
A portion of that discussion should be about getting a prenuptial agreement. In such a contract, the finances are already divided out in case of a divorce. Granted, no one wants to think about the possibility of an unfortunate end to a marriage that is just about to begin. Nevertheless, there are times when this happens. If you hold a lot of assets that need to be protected, this is the best and most effective way to accomplish that.
Marital (Communal) vs Separate Property
In New York, all the property that a couple gains in marriage is considered as a communal or marital property. The collection of these is known as the Marital Estate. By right, this collection of assets should be shared equitably between the spouses when a marriage is disolved. Numerous factors, including any appreciation of property, real estate or retirement accounts have to be included in the divorce property division. The exceptions to this rule are inheritances and gifts.
When you wedded your spouse, you may have already had some of your own property, cash savings or investments. Your spouse may have entered the union with their own property, cash and/or investments, as well. These assets are referred to as separate property. You and your spouse have the right to exclude specific pieces of property from the marital estate by entering into some type of legal marital agreement, such as a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement. Alternatively, without the existence of a written and signed agreement, the presumption is that the sum total of the property acquired during the marriage is indiscriminately classified as marital property. Assets such as inheritances, personal injury/worker’s compensation awards for pain and suffering and any third-party gifts are all exceptions to communal property rule.
Frequently Asked Property Division Questions
Coming Into the Marriage as a Business Owner
If either spouse came into the marriage owning a business, and then the value of the business increased during the course of marriage, is any share of the business considered marital property?
The Family Home
If you purchased your home together as a married couple, and the possibility of selling it to split up the proceeds is not a practical solution, then which spouse will continue to live in the home? Will that spouse be obligated to buy out the other spouse’s portion?
In scenarios where one spouse compiled a large amount of retirement savings over the years of the marriage, is the other spouse entitled to any portion of those monies? If they are, how would those funds be divided?
You should have a New York property division lawyer who has experience handling these and a wide range of other situations that may come up in the property division stage of your divorce.
The Final Step of Property Division
The final step is to solidify the agreement and then proceed to actually take possession of the items. Again, don’t let it surprise you if things go poorly. There tends to be a lot of pent-up emotion running through this process. That is why it is so much better to have plans ironed out ahead of time and let then leave it to the lawyers handle it when the time comes. Our law firm has years of experience in dealing with property division under New York law, which comes with its own set of challenges. We will be by your side and represent your interests as we have done with our many previous satisfied clients. Our track record is well proven. We are well aware that this is a difficult time for you and we know what effect this can have on your well-being, so our team is always courteous, supportive and professional. Don’t wait until things to become complicated: reach out to us today to schedule a consultation so that we can learn more about each other and suggest a strategy for you.
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