Florida Judges use the equitable distribution method to figure out who gets which assets as part of a divorce settlement. The goal is to divide the assets between you and your spouse in a just and fair (but not necessarily equal) way based on what each person owns and their contribution to the marriage. Navigating the equitable distribution laws may be challenging without an experienced family law attorney to explain unfamiliar terms and give recommendations.
A Coconut Grove equitable distribution lawyer is available to talk to you about your current situation. Our attorneys have handled many cases within Florida’s property division laws and can provide compassionate help to those going through a divorce.
What Is Equitable Distribution?
When two people get a divorce, one of the things they need to decide is how to divide up their property. There are many ways to go about this and it largely depends on the law of the state handling the divorce. In Florida, the primary way the Judge divides assets is with a legal method called equitable distribution.
Under Florida’s equitable distribution law, the spouses typically get to keep things that are in their name or solely belong to them. For example, if they received an inheritance or bought a car before the marriage, they may get to keep these after the union ends. On the other hand, houses, cars, and money brought in during the marriage are added up and divided equitably among each person.
Equitable does not always mean equal, so each spouse would benefit from having their own attorney to review the assets and negotiate a fair divorce settlement. An equitable distribution lawyer can provide targeted legal advice to individuals in Coconut Grove.
How Does the Judge Decide to Distribute Assets?
Dividing money and property is a multi-step process, beginning with discovering each person’s assets and labeling it as marital (owned by both spouses) or nonmarital (only in one person’s name or acquired before the marriage). Once everyone knows what assets and debts exist and who they belong to, the spouses and their attorneys typically go back and forth to figure out how they would like to divide up the assets. Once they reach a final agreement, they present it to the Judge for approval.
Before approving a settlement, the Judge decides if it is legal under Florida law. In making their decision, they typically consider things like the length of the marriage, which parent the kids will live with, and the financial position of each spouse after the union. For example, if one party took off work for several years to raise their children, the Judge may decide they should get more money or property to compensate them for that.
Property division is often a heated conversation between spouses and there are many factors to be aware of before they finalize an agreement. A Coconut Grove equitable distribution attorney helps people understand what to expect during negotiations and can make the case for someone to receive or keep property that should be rightfully theirs.
Contact a Coconut Grove Equitable Distribution Attorney for Help Today
Dividing up your property is a big step during a divorce. Landing on a fair settlement is essential to set you up for success as you transition out of married life. The Florida Probate & Family Law Firm can negotiate with your spouse’s attorney to make sure you are not being taken advantage of.
Our lawyers have an intricate understanding of how Judges can divide property. We will support, guide, and fight for your rights to receive or keep assets after the marriage ends. Contact a Coconut Grove equitable distribution lawyer today for a free consultation.