Determined And Dedicated Lawyers, Here For You

What is the concept of equitable distribution?

On Behalf of | Apr 10, 2023 | Divorce

Indiana is an equitable distribution state, which means that marital assets must be divided in a fair manner by a divorce judge. Of course, this doesn’t necessarily mean that they will be allocated in a 50/50 manner in a final settlement. There are a few factors that a judge might look at prior to approving a property division settlement.

Economic factors

If you earn more money than your spouse, you may be required to part with a greater portion of the marital estate. For example, your spouse might receive 75% of funds in a joint bank account or receive a larger share of a retirement account as part of a property division agreement. This may also be true if your spouse is disabled, is too old to reenter the workforce or has other legitimate issues when it comes to generating an income.

If you have children

If you share children with your spouse, it’s possible that your spouse will be named their primary caregiver. In such a scenario, you may be required to cede control of the family home to the custodial parent. In addition to helping your spouse, it may also be in the child’s best interest to remain in the same place after a divorce is finalized.

Not all assets are marital property

Generally speaking, assets that were acquired during the marriage are considered part of the marital estate. However, items that are held in a trust or considered exempt as part of a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement may not be divided. Furthermore, exceptions may apply to items that were acquired prior to the marriage. For instance, if you bought a house as a single person, any appreciation that took place before the wedding may be exempt from equitable division rules.

In a divorce settlement, you may be entitled to a share of almost anything that was acquired during a marriage. This may include a portion of a joint bank, brokerage or retirement account as well as a share of stock options, equity in a home or anything else that may be of value.