Who Gets What In A Divorce? It’s Really Up To You.
You and your spouse worked hard together. You bought a house, saved for retirement, maybe even treated yourself to a new car or RV.
But now that you’re separating, you have questions about property and divorce and more specifically who gets what and the division of assets in divorce.
You want to make sure that all you worked for doesn’t wind up
getting wasted on legal fees because you know
working with lawyers can literally bankrupt you if you let it.
So you’ve come here to learn about the more cost-effective divorce mediation process and how it can help you with a property and divorce settlement.
Mediating Equitable Distribution – The Division of Assets in Divorce
There’s a simple distinction you should understand here.
In a litigated divorce, a judge determines who gets what. Sounds scary, doesn’t it? On the other hand, in mediation, you come to an agreement you both agree is fair, instead of letting your future be decided by a stranger.
In mediation, you and your spouse determine the division of assets in the divorce yourselves, under the guidance of a skilled mediator.
But the division of assets in divorce is just one piece of a larger picture.
Maybe you’ve also accumulated significant debt. Your home may be “upside down” or you have credit card bills that have piled up over the years. And while it’s always more encouraging to talk about the division of assets in divorce we also need to talk about the other side of the equation too – the division of liabilities.
At Equitable Mediation, we help you and your spouse create an agreement you both find fair and equitable concerning the division of assets in divorce as well as the liabilities.
Making Sure Fair Is Fair When It Comes To Property And Divorce
The question of who gets what in a divorce is guided by the concept of equitable distribution which is defined as: “the fair, but not necessarily equal, division between former spouses of property acquired during the marriage.”
With our extensive financial knowledge of the complex matters of property and divorce we can make sure you and your spouse not only come to an agreement that you both think is fair, but one that also minimizes tax issues, avoids penalties and improves cash flow whenever possible.
The interesting part about who gets what in a divorce is that
you and your spouse get to decide.
The two of you are empowered to select the mix of assets and liabilities you both receive as part of the divorce.
Maybe one of you wants to keep the house while one of you is closer to retirement and wants to keep more of the retirement assets. One of you wants the car while the other will take the RV. All of these decisions are yours to make.
Giving You The Perspective You Need
In our role as mediators, we keep a watchful eye on the negotiations. Our concern is to ensure one party isn’t going to wind up at a severe economic disadvantage.
Not everyone possesses the financial expertise regarding property and divorce that we do. We work to level the playing field if there’s a power imbalance due to a lack of understanding of financial matters.
And while the decisions are yours to make, make no mistake:
We will actively guide you through the decision-making process
to help you both arrive at the most fair and equitable settlement possible.
Our mediators know the law and the numbers.
Discovering Your Financial Past
Before we get down to the deciding, we need to discover what it is the two of you have been working to build over the years.
To begin the process of determining who gets what in a divorce, we’ll ask you and your spouse to provide us with the values of all marital assets including, but not limited to:
- Your marital home or other real estate you’ve acquired.
- Your checking accounts, savings accounts, money markets and CDs.
- Any 401(k) Plans, IRAs, pensions or non-retirement investments you’ve earned while married.
- Any privately held business should you or your spouse be self-employed.
- Your vehicle information including automobiles, motorcycles, boats or RVs.
- Personal furnishings, appliances and decorative items of significant value.
In addition to the division of assets in divorce, we’ll ask each party to provide the values for all marital liabilities including, but not limited to:
- Mortgages on your property including the first mortgage as well as any home equity loans.
- Any automobile loans either of you might have.
- Any personal loans with friends, family members or formal institutions.
- Your credit card statements for both individual and joint accounts.
- Any debts owed to or notices from the IRS.
We’ll review all of these items along with copies of your tax returns, pay stubs and credit reports so that we can get a complete financial picture of what you look like as a couple.
This enables us to help you and your spouse come to an agreement you both find fair.
Property And Divorce Doesn’t Have To Be Complicated
Every couple’s situation is unique so why be forced to accept a settlement drafted by an attorney when you can have a direct say in your financial future?