Equitable Distribution 2017-08-14T11:10:48+00:00

Equitable Distribution

Marital Asset Division Attorneys Morris County, NJ

Addressing the Concerns of Clients across Randolph, Madison, Tewksbury, Morristown, and Morris County

Before any Morris County divorce can be granted, you and your spouse will first need to decide how you are going to divide the various marital assets and debts you have obtained over the course of your marriage. This process, sometimes known as the division of assets process, is often the most time-consuming and difficult aspect of any divorce.

Not only will you have to decide which assets are considered marital assets, and not the property of one individual, you will also have to accurately value all of these assets, and divide them according to New Jersey equitable distribution laws. Equitable distribution means that your marital assets will need to be divided in a fair, but not necessarily equal, manner, and this important distinction is where having an experienced Morris County asset division attorney can be of enormous benefit.

At Jacobs Berger, LLC, our attorneys have extensive experience helping clients across Madison, Randolph, Tewksbury, Morristown, and the greater Morris County area to favorable and successfully value, and divide, marital assets and debts of all kinds. Our unique approach focuses on helping our clients build a secure foundation for their new life, rather than tearing down the many things they have worked so hard to build during the course of their marriage.

Contact our firm today to discuss your unique needs and concerns when it comes to marital asset division in a confidential case assessment.

 

What Assets are Subject to Equitable Distribution in my Morris County Divorce?

Any asset or debt which is considered marital property will be subject to equitable distribution laws during your divorce. This can include assets such as:

  • Homes, Residences, and Properties
  • Businesses or business interests
  • Investments, stocks, or bonds
  • Retirement funds such as a 401k plan
  • Cars, collectibles, and jewelry
  • Debts such as loans or credit card debt

One of the most important steps during the division of assets process is determining exactly which assets are marital property, and thus subject to equitable distribution, and which assets are separate property, exempt from equitable distribution. In general, any asset or debt obtained during the course of a marriage will be considered marital property. Additionally, assets which were privately owned before the marriage, but contributed to by the other spouse during the course of the marriage, will most likely also be considered marital property.

Marital contributions can be anything from personal sacrifices made in order to maintain a property or business, to actual money spent by a spouse on the maintenance, upkeep, or possession of an asset. So for example if one spouse stayed at home in order to be the caretaker of a home or the family, while the other focused on growing a privately-owned business, that business will most likely be considered marital property due to the marital contributions made by the other spouse, even if the business was privately owned before the marriage.

Determining which assets are marital property and which assets are separate property during the division of assets process is a critical step, and our attorneys are prepared to thoroughly investigate all of the contributions you or your spouse has made to the marriage, and help you fairly and accurately divide marital property from separate property.

 

How will our Assets be Divided during a Morris County Divorce?

Before beginning the division of assets process, the first thing that will be taken into consideration is the existence of any prenuptial agreement or marital agreement you may have with your spouse. Marital agreements often contain specific terms regarding the division of different assets in the event of a divorce, and as long as your marital agreement is legal and valid, the terms it contains regarding specific marital assets will most likely take precedence over equitable distribution laws.

If you have an existing prenuptial agreement or marital agreement with your spouse, it is critical that you discuss this fact with your attorney, so that they can properly evaluate its legality, and any potential affects it may have on your division of assets process.

Barring the existence of a marital agreement, the New Jersey division of assets process operates on a method of equitable distribution. This means that any asset division agreement you reach with your spouse will need to be fair, but not necessarily equal, to both parties. This allows for individual parties to retain possession of assets that may be of particular importance to them, in exchange for assets that may be of slightly greater monetary value, or vice versa.

Finally, only assets which are considered marital property will be subject to equitable distribution during your divorce, while assets that are determined to be separate property will not.

 

Madison Property Division Attorneys Discuss Court Intervention

Should you and your spouse be unable to reach an acceptable agreement regarding the distribution of marital assets, the courts will intervene and make an ultimate ruling. Their ruling will be based on several different factors regarding the division of your marital property, including:

  • Duration of the union or marriage
  • Physical and emotional health and age of both parties
  • Projected economic circumstances of both parties upon divorce
  • Standard of living that the parties enjoyed while married
  • Income and property brought to the marriage or civil union by each party
  • Written agreements, such as prenuptial or postnuptial agreements, between the parties
  • Earning capacity, training and education of each party
  • Responsibility for children and physical custody thereof
  • Debts and liabilities of the parties

While the court will always seek to rule in a fair and equitable manner, it is almost always better to settle these issues with your spouse with the help of our attorneys. The courts will not take into account many of your specific needs or desire to maintain possession of certain properties, while our attorneys will. We will work together with you to help you ensure whatever asset division agreement you reach properly takes into account your needs, and allows you to rebuild your life after your divorce from a position of security and stability.

 

Contact our Morristown Division of Asset Attorneys Today

At The Law Office of Jacobs Berger, our attorneys have extensive experience helping clients across Madison, Randolph, Tewksbury, Morristown, and the greater Morris County area to favorably and effectively divide marital assets during the divorce or mediation process.

We help you determine which assets are marital property and which assets are separately properly, accurately value those marital assets, and ultimately settle your asset division agreement in the manner that best meets your specific needs and concerns.

To schedule a confidential case assessment with one of our attorneys today regarding the division of your marital assets and debt, please contact us online, or through our Morristown office at (973) 718-7705.