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What do the courts consider when dividing property?

On Behalf of | Dec 9, 2020 | Divorce

During your marriage, you and your spouse might have acquired many assets of value. If you two are now divorcing, you may be indignant at the idea of parting with any of these. In this case, you will likely have difficulty agreeing about how to divide your marital property, and you may need the court to do it for you. When splitting you and your spouse’s assets, the court will adhere to Florida’s property division laws.

Florida’s property division laws

Like most states, Florida follows equitable distribution property division laws. Under these laws, you and your spouse will not necessarily receive an equal share of your marital property in your divorce. Rather, you will end up with shares that reflect your marital and individual circumstances, as determined by the court.

Some factors the court will consider when dividing your marital property include:

  • Your and your spouse’s individual economic circumstances
  • Your and your spouse’s economic and noneconomic contributions to your marriage
  • Your marriage’s length
  • Whether you or your spouse contributed to the other’s career or education
  • Whether you or your spouse had their career or education interrupted
  • Whether you or your spouse dissipated, wasted or destroyed marital assets
  • Whether you or your spouse want to hold on to specific assets you have an interest in (like a business)
  • Whether you or your spouse will receive your marital home

How Florida courts treat separate property

You and your spouse might have entered your marriage with assets of your own. Or, you might have received individual gifts or inheritances during your marriage. In most cases, these assets will count as separate property and will remain indivisible in your divorce. The exception to this rule is if you commingled these assets with marital property. If you did, the court may divide them at its discretion.

Though the court will do its best to divide your marital property in an equitable manner, leaving this outcome to chance is a risky proposition. By seeking legal help, you can make sure the share of assets you receive reflects your needs and circumstances.