Florida divides marital property based on principals of equity, and is known as an “Equitable Distribution” state. Marital property is property acquired during the marriage with marital funds or labor, and generally will be divided equally upon divorce. However, there can be "equitable reasons" why the property will NOT be divided equally. What is determined to be nonmarital property, assets and liabilities acquired before the marriage, remains the sole and separate property of the spouse upon divorce.
Property includes assets, liabilities, and income. Assets include any real estate, bank accounts, retirement accounts, accrued sick & vacation pay, intellectual property (patents, trademarks, and copyrights), stock options, business interests, and tangible personal property (which includes things like cars, jewelry, guns, art, and pets).
Liabilities include any kind of debt such as a mortgage, student loan, credit card debt, tax liens, car loan, and more.
Nonmarital property is property (and liabilities) acquired prior to the marriage. There is some occasions that property acquired during the marriage is also considered a spouse’s nonmarital property (inheritance, other ....).
The following types of property are considered nonmarital assets:
This occurs when nonmarital property is retitled from one spouse’s name into both spouses names. This also happens when commingling of marital and nonmarital property occurs.
This also occurs when the value of a nonmarital asset appreciates because of the labor or financial contribution of a spouse during the marriage.
Marital property is property acquired during the marriage with marital funds or labor. Such property is considered marital property regardless of whose name is on the title of the property. If the property is acquired during a marriage with marital income or funds, those are marital assets.
Marital property is generally divided equally between the spouses and, in order to accomplish this, the court goes through 4 steps:
The court may divide the marital property unequally as long as the result is equitable. The court may look at the following:
It is important to know that courts allow for unequal distribution of marital assets in instances of marital misconduct coupled with an intentional dissipation of marital assets (i.e., waste of marital assets). These situations can arise in instances where marital funds have been and, unlike other issues in a Divorce (child care plan, child support etc...) Equitable (or Unequitable) Distribution is Final.
ALEJANDRO RIVERA P.A. An experienced Family and Divorce Law Firm located in Kissimmee can help you with your Divorce or other family law concerns. The first consultation is free and we are available if necessary on evenings and weekends. If you need a Divorce attorney then Family Law Attorney Alejandro Rivera and Family Law Attorney Jessica Fellows would like you to know: