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How Is Property Divided in a Divorce?

Property Separation in a Divorce

In Michigan, divorce courts distribute the marital assets in a manner they feel is fair. Unlike judges in many other states, Michigan judges are not bound by strict guidelines or formulas when making these decisions. They determine which property is considered marital and which property is separate, and in doing so, they take several factors into consideration before rending a decision. If you're going through a divorce, the best thing you can do to ensure that you retain the property you deserve is to enlist the help of an experienced divorce attorney.

Marital property is typically divided between spouses in a divorce. Marital property consists of assets earned or acquired while the parties were married. Common examples of marital property include homes, cars, property, and financial assets. With marital property, judges do not attempt to determine who earned the money to pay for the asset. As a function of them being married, all assets of this type are considered marital, and therefore subject to division.

Separate property includes property or assets obtained before marriage. For example, if a person owned a condominium before marriage and the couple purchased another home to live in upon getting married, the court would likely consider the condominium as separate property. This does not hold true, however, if a title was amended after marriage to include the other spouse. Other items often considered as separate property include gifts bequeathed to one spouse from a friend or family member, which might have monetary value but also hold sentimental value. 

While dividing property is an arduous task, as distinguishing separate and marital property requires careful deliberation, Michigan courts strive for a fair and equitable division of marital property and assets acquired during the marriage. 

If you’re in the midst of a divorce, or you’re just beginning to think about dissolving your marriage, the Law Office of John R. Rinn is your best choice for legal representation, especially when you’re at risk of losing property that you hold dear. I have have decades of experience handling all aspects of family law, so no matter what your divorce may entail, you can trust that you and I will work together on the best course of action for your case. Contact me today to schedule a consultation!

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