Are assets split 50/50 in divorce in Florida?

Property Division in Divorce: Florida Divorce Law

When a married couple files for divorce in Florida, the division of marital assets and liabilities is known as “equitable distribution.” See Florida Statute 61.075. Unless there are factors that would make an equal split inequitable, the court will usually divide marital assets and liabilities 50/50.

The first step is usually to determine whether the asset or debt is marital or separate property.

A court can only distribute marital property/debt in an equitable manner.

Divorce is a stressful and nerve-racking time because it marks the end of a marriage, the end of the hope and dream of what could have been. There is a lot riding on the outcome, especially in high-asset divorce cases. When the parties involved have a substantial net worth, divorce presents unique challenges. In such cases, it is critical to retain the services of an attorney who is well-versed in the law and understands complex financial investments. You will also want an attorney with a good reputation with expert witnesses to be used in your case. Forensic accountants, auditors, appraisers, and social investigators are common witnesses. Call Brandon Legal Group to speak with a high asset divorce attorney in Tampa if you need help with a divorce.

Will I Lose My Property in a Divorce?

The first step is to categorize each asset and debt as marital or separate property. Only marital property and debt are subject to equitable distribution; separate property remains the sole property of the spouse who owns it. Normally, this is a simple process; however, in high-asset divorces, it can become extremely complicated.  As a result, it is critical to hire an attorney who is experienced in high-asset divorces and can aggressively represent your interests.

Separate property may be classified as marital property under certain conditions under Florida divorce law. For example, if your separate property has become entwined with your spouse’s or other marital property, it may be subject to equitable distribution. A typical example of a comingled property is when a couple lives in a home that one spouse purchased prior to the marriage but uses marital funds to pay the mortgage or make home improvements. When a spouse is granted equal access to separate property, it may become marital property.  The determination of whether the separate property has been commingled with marital property is based on the facts of each case. As a result, if you need information about a specific set of circumstances, you should seek the advice of an experienced Brandon divorce attorney.

Will the home be divided in the event of a divorce?

When a homeowner wishes to sell their home as part of a divorce settlement, they must include a partition claim in the divorce paperwork. If the partition is granted, the home may be divided between the parties or sold, with the proceeds divided equitably among the parties. If the house is divided, an appraisal will almost certainly be required to assign an appropriate value to the home.

If the home is not sold as part of the divorce, one spouse is usually required to make the monthly mortgage payments. However, if the spouse who is supposed to make payments fails to do so, both parties may be held liable by the bank. If both parties signed the promissory note, a divorce settlement would not release a spouse from his or her obligation to the bank, regardless of what the judge might decree in the divorce agreement. The bank is not a party to the divorce proceedings and has not agreed to any such agreement. Instead, the spouse must seek indemnification from the party who is obligated to pay under the divorce settlement agreement. A common way to avoid this issue is to require refinancing, releasing the non-paying party from the bank’s liability.

 

Is it possible to divide credit cards for a  divorce in Florida?

Credit cards and other debts incurred during the marriage must also be distributed fairly. Credit card debt incurred during the marriage is typically considered marital property, even if only one spouse is listed on the account. As a result, the credit card will be subject to equitable distribution and may be divided between the spouses.

Divorce and Student Loans

Student loan debt can be enormous. Student loan debt incurred during the marriage is generally considered a marital liability and is subject to equitable distribution. Thus, unless there are factors that make an equal split inequitable, the debt will be divided equally. The fact that a non-borrowing spouse will receive no benefit from the student’s education is insufficient to justify an unequal division. Future earnings from higher education are also unlikely to be considered in the case.

For example.   Suppose that after eight years of marriage, the parties filed for. During the marriage, the wife accumulated over $50,000 in student loan debt; the husband incurred no student loan debt. Despite the fact that the wife did not begin working as a paralegal until after the divorce, the court will most likely rule that the student loan debt should be divided equally between the husband and wife.

 

Who Is Responsible for the Pets in a Divorce?

The court will not grant any time-sharing orders for pets under Florida divorce law. Instead, one of the parties will be the sole owner of the animal. As a result, if a couple wants to share custody of their pet, they must do so themselves. A family law judge in Florida cannot order the couple to share custody of their pet because Florida law considers pets to be property and applies property law rather than custody law. If the sole owner decides to share time with the pets, it is entirely at his or her discretion.

Prenuptial Contracts

Premarital agreements, or prenups, essentially contract that a couple signs before getting married. In the event of a divorce, the contract governs the distribution of assets, debts, alimony, and other issues. A prenuptial agreement allows you to tailor provisions of Florida divorce law to your specific circumstances. A properly drafted Florida prenuptial agreement will allow you to specify the terms of your divorce. Rather than a judge deciding how your assets should be divided and how much spousal support you should receive.

 

How to Get More Than Half of the Marital Property

In most Florida divorce cases, the judge will begin with the premise of dividing marital assets 50/50 between the two parties. In Florida, the law requires that a court distribute a marital asset equally unless there is a “legally sufficient justification for an unequal distribution based on the relevant statutory factors.” Without legal representation, obtaining an unequal distribution of a marital asset in Florida can be extremely difficult.

The following are the relevant statutory factors under Florida Statute 61.075:

(a) Each spouse’s contribution to the marriage.

(b) The parties’ economic circumstances.

(c) The length of the marriage.

(d) Any disruption to either party’s personal careers or educational opportunities.

(e) One spouse’s contribution to the other spouse’s personal career or educational opportunity.

(f) The desire to keep any asset intact and free of any claim or interference by the other party, including an interest in a business, corporation, or professional practice.

(g) Each spouse’s contribution to the acquisition, enhancement, and production of income, or the improvement of, or incurrence of liabilities to, both the parties’ marital and nonmarital assets.

(h) The desire to keep the marital home as a residence for any dependent child of the marriage.

(i) The intentional dissipation, waste, depletion, or destruction of marital assets after the petition is filed or within two years before the petition is filed.

 

Consult our Brandon Family Law Attorneys

Call us today to speak with a divorce attorney in Brandon, Fishhawk, and South Country if you are thinking about filing for divorce and are concerned about how to divide marital assets. Our divorce attorneys have years of experience assisting clients with divorce and child custody issues. Every divorce is unique, and our extensive experience allows us to tailor our services to each client’s specific needs. Whether a couple has mutually agreed to the terms of their divorce or is fighting for their property and child custody rights, Brandon Legal Group can assist. Take advantage of our free initial consultation. Call us at (813) 902-3576 to speak with a divorce lawyer today.

 

 

Brandon Legal Group
1209 Lakeside Drive
Brandon FL, 33510
Phone: (813)-902-3576
Email: service@brandonlegalgroup.com