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Divorce and property division

Like most states, Florida law calls for equitable distribution when dividing property in divorce cases. Equitable distribution does not necessarily mean that marital property is divided equally, but it is divided in a way that the court deems fair. In equitable distribution states, the spouse who purchased a particular asset probably get to keep the asset after the divorce.

Many people think about dividing marital assets in a divorce and forget that marital debts must be divided as well. Like assets, debts will also be divided in an equitable fashion. Divorcing spouses may agree to split debts, or one spouse may agree to take on the debts in exchange for particular assets. No matter what kind of personal agreement divorcing spouses reach about their debts, the agreement will not change the joint financial contracts on things like home mortgages, auto loans and joint credit cards.

Taxes are another factor spouses must consider while they are dividing property in a divorce. A newly divorced person will be filing their taxes as a single person, and some property division agreements could cause capital gains taxes to kick in. The recipient of alimony payments may have to pay taxes on the income while a person who pays alimony can write the payments off as a deduction.

Dividing marital assets equitably can be a complicated process, and a judge must consider many different factors when making a final decision about property division. An attorney may be able to help a divorcing spouse reach an out-of-court divorce settlement that could be faster and more cost effective than a litigated settlement.

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