Everyone understands how contentious and difficult some components of a divorce, such as child custody, visitation rights, or spousal support can be. Not often considered, though, is the challenge of property division. An Albemarle, NC property division lawyer is vital to obtaining a successful outcome in any property division case.
Coming to an agreement regarding who will take what property, what will be sold and split, and what should or shouldn’t be considered marital property can often be a source of contention. If you are getting a divorce and going to be working through the property division component, it can be valuable to work with an experienced family lawyer.
An accomplished family attorney in Albemarle, NC understands the legal aspects of property division and can balance that against your interests. They can help you seek an agreement that is fair to you while also being acceptable to the court.
North Carolina operates on the principles of equitable distribution when considering how property should be divided in a divorce. It’s important to realize that this doesn’t mean equal distribution. There is not a 50-50 split of the property. Instead, the guiding principle is that the marital property should be divided in a way that is fair and equitable.
There is often debate regarding what should be considered marital property and what shouldn’t. Separate property is that which was acquired before a marriage. The same is true of debts as well. It could also be inheritances and gifts. However, there are some cases where things like upgrades to an inherited house could lead to conflict regarding their classification.
Once everything is classified and a valuation is determined, decisions need to be made regarding the distribution of property. The couple can decide this together through a process like mediation, or it could be left up to the court to determine. However, a variety of different factors must be considered to decide what is equitable. Some of these include:
A: The property division will have to be agreed to by the court. However, this doesn’t mean that the matter needs to be argued in front of the court. For divorcing couples looking to go through a process like mediation, a part of that will typically involve a negotiation regarding how property will be divided.
Whatever agreement the divorcing couple comes to will need to be submitted to the court to be assessed. The court will look at the agreement to ensure that it seems fair and is in the interests of any children involved. However, if you are working with an experienced lawyer, they know how to put together something that the court can find acceptable.
A: North Carolina requires that couples who get a divorce must first be separated for more than a year before they can file and begin the legal process. This means that they must live apart from each other for at least one year and a day. Also, one of the parties must intend for it to be a permanent arrangement.
Once the legal process begins, it can take several months or even longer, depending upon the complexity of the situation. However, preparation for the divorce during the separation period can help accelerate the process.
A: There are a few different ways that a lawyer can help with property division. Whether through mediation, negotiating the division, or in court, we can represent you and advocate for your interests. We have experience handling these kinds of situations, so we can also help set expectations for what an equitable agreement would look like.
We also understand what the court is looking for, so we can help craft an agreement that is likely to be seen as fair by a judge. If, though, it is necessary to work out the property division in court hearings, we are prepared to represent you and make the case for your interests.
A: Child custody and property division are separate matters that are not directly linked in the divorce process. However, that doesn’t mean that what has been decided in a child custody decision won’t have some consideration in how the property is divided.
Through the whole divorce process, the court will want to ensure that any children involved have their welfare as a focus. They are not involved in the divorce but will have their lives disrupted because of it, so the court will often try to ensure as much continuity for them as possible. Therefore, the court will certainly want to ensure that, however custody is decided, parents will be able to provide a suitable situation for the children.
We understand how difficult divorce can be and recognize how challenging property division, in particular, is for many people. For one, there’s the practical component of things. It is vital to make sure that you have enough property to continue to have the basics in life.
There’s also the emotional aspect of things as well. Even though you are ready to move on from a particular portion of your life, it doesn’t mean that it’s not hard to process how much can be wrapped up in shared properties. We often associate memories with tangible items, and dealing with those memories is often a part of the process.
If you’re looking for help with property division and your divorce, you need someone who can represent your interests well while also understanding the complexity of the emotions involved. Contact us at The Law Offices of Aimee E. Cain for help with your case.