Divorce Asset And Debt Division FAQ
It makes sense to understand some common points regarding asset and debt division when you go through a divorce in Florida. The experienced attorneys at Korshak & Associates can draw from more than four decades’ worth of combined experience to help you understand the process of dividing assets and debts in divorce.
Here are some commonly asked questions that we often encounter from our family law clients:
How do the courts decide who receives what property?
In Florida, the courts will require the parties to submit the documentation of all of their assets, including real estate, personal property, bank accounts, retirement accounts, investment accounts and more. Anything that can be considered property must be reviewed by the courts. A judge will then apply the equitable distribution principle and divide the assets fairly. Debts are also divided.
If Florida is an equitable division state, shouldn’t my spouse and I get exactly half the assets and half the debts each?
It is true that Florida has adopted the equitable division principle, but “equitable” in this case does not mean “equal.” Legally speaking, equitable means fair or just – so an exactly even split isn’t required, and it might be very difficult to achieve depending on the types of assets and debts involved.
It’s up to the courts to divide both the assets and the debts in an equitable fashion, so there is a fair amount of discretion involved at this stage. This makes it all the more important to have an experienced family law lawyer on your side during the process. Our Orlando attorneys will work with you to make sure your rights are protected.
If my spouse and I can’t agree to a settlement, does that mean we have to have a trial?
No, not necessarily. Litigation might be the answer at that point, but it is not your only option. Many Florida couples choose mediation, in which a neutral third party – the mediator – helps you work through the points that you can’t agree on. It’s often faster and less expensive than going to court. Your attorney can help guide you to determine what the best option for you and your family is.
What are some things I should avoid doing or saying that may negatively impact my case?
It is best to keep the details of your case between yourself and your attorney. You should not:
- Discuss anything about the case with your spouse or your spouse’s attorney without your lawyer present
- Involve children in any discussions regarding child support or child custody
- Speak harshly about your spouse in front of anyone, especially your children
- Post anything on social media that shows assets, vacations, property or other items/activities that have value as it can call into question what you are entitled to
- Post anything demeaning, rude or negative about your spouse on social media
Are there certain types of assets or properties that are exempt from property division?
In general, anything that was obtained on or after the date of the marriage is subject to division during a divorce. However, there may be property or assets that are exempt, depending on when they were obtained. For example, any assets you brought into the marriage remain separate; if marital funds were used to maintain those assets, they then may be subject to division. Also, anything that was inherited by a solely named member of the couple stays with that person. It is not subject to division. There may be other instances, which are best discussed directly with your lawyer.