Dividing Property in Divorce
Generally speaking, in a Utah divorce proceeding, each party in the divorce is entitled to his or her separate property and 50% of the marital property. Separate property includes property that the party owned prior to the marriage and marital property includes property that was acquired during the marriage. The personal property of the parties may include money, bank accounts, vehicles, and other assets. Dividing property in divorce usually one of the least contentious issues. However, in divorces involving large amounts of assets, the biggest fights may be in this area.
At our Utah law firm we have Utah family law and divorce attorneys who can effectively help you secure your rights to property in a divorce or other proceeding and instruct through the process of dividing property in divorce. Below are a few common areas people have questions in when considering their property division.
Dividing the Marital Home
Choosing who gets the house is a significant decision in an action for divorce. A Utah court will divide a marital home in a divorce based on what is equitable. If there are children living in the home, this fact alone may sway the court one way or the other on the issue of the home because the Court may take in the emotional needs of the children and their desire to stay in the home. The Court may also consider child support and spousal support in determining the issue of the home.
Division of Debts
Dividing property in a divorce includes not only the assets involved, by the debts as well. As a general rule, a husband is not responsible for his wife’s debt, and a wife is not responsible for her husband’s debt. However, both spouses are responsible for debts created for a family purpose. This means that if your spouse racks up a bunch of credit card debt not related to family expenses, you may not be liable for that debt in a divorce. But if you spouse racks up debt related to family expenses, those debts will be considered family debts and you may be liable for those debts in a divorce.
Retirement and Pension Plans
The general rule in Utah is that any amount paid into a retirement or pension plan by either party during the marriage is considered marital property and may be equitably divided by the court. Parties may be awarded a share of a pension or other retirement benefit even in circumstances where the parties will not expect to collect benefits until some future date.
There are no statutes in Utah defining the use of life insurance in domestic disputes. However, the court does have equitable power to order current policies be maintained or that new policies be purchased. The courts can also order the designation of a beneficiary.
Secure Your Rights to Property
The Utah divorce lawyers at SLF can help protect your interests to property during a divorce or other proceeding, we can be very helpful in guiding you through the process of dividing property in divorce. Call us today and Get Protected! 801.413.1753 or toll free at 888.337.3235 or email.