Dividing property in a divorce is more complex than it may seem. First, careful study and research are necessary to be sure that all property is accounted for. This can be accomplished informally, either by exchanging information through voluntary disclosures and corroborating sources, or after aggressive, thorough, formal discovery investigating sources and uses of assets.
Next, property must be categorized as either marital or separate. Generally, property acquired during the marriage is presumptively marital property, while separate property includes property owned by a party prior to marriage or acquired as a gift or by inheritance. Usually each party keeps his or her own separate property while marital property will be divided.
Divorcing spouses may enter into a Marital Dissolution Agreement to distribute the assets and debts acquired during the marriage. If the parties cannot reach an agreement before trial, the court will make an equitable division of the marital property and debts. Equitable distribution does not always mean that it will be equal. The court’s decision will be based upon what it believes to be fair based upon the evidence presented and the history of the marriage.
At times, it may be necessary to discover assets that one spouse has hidden in order to gain an advantage in divorce proceedings. We have the tools and expertise to find and account for all such assets to ensure that our clients receive a fair distribution of all property to which they are entitled.
Our Tennessee divorce lawyers have extensive experience handling the complex issues involved when dividing property acquired throughout marriage. You can feel confident knowing that we will account for all separate and marital property, accurately appraise all property, and ensure that you receive your fair share of the marital estate. Call us today to schedule a consultation.