One of the most difficult issues that all couples have to face when they get a divorce is determining how they will divide the marital property. Most people think that property division only pertains to assets such as the family home, vehicles, cash and other household items, but all of a couple’s property needs to be divided during a divorce -- including assets and debts that are not necessarily tangible. Property division tends to become more difficult the longer a couple has been married because couples that have been together for many years have typically accumulated more together.
Marital and Non-marital Property
Before you go to court, you must first determine which property is actually subject to division. In Illinois, all marital property is subject to division and non-marital property is not. Marital property is any property or debt that was acquired by either spouse after the marriage. All other property is considered to be non-marital property.
Factors Used in Making Determinations
If you and your spouse, along with each of your attorneys cannot come to an agreement about marital property, a judge will assign the property to each spouse as he or she sees fit. There are certain factors a judge must take into consideration before he or she assigns the property. These factors include:
- Each spouse’s contribution to the acquisition or value of marital property;
- The contributions a spouse made as a homemaker to the family, if applicable;
- The value of the property assigned to each spouse;
- How long the marriage lasted;
- The relevant economic circumstances of each spouse;
- Any obligations and rights either spouse may have from a previous marriage;
- Whether the couple has a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement;
- The age, health, occupation, income, employability and needs of each spouse;
- The custodial provisions for any children;
- Whether the property division is in addition to or instead of maintenance payments;
- The reasonable opportunity of each spouse to acquire assets and income; and
- The tax consequences of the property division.
Consult With a DuPage County Property Division Lawyer
Determining who gets what in a divorce can produce hostile and nasty arguments. It is always best to try to come to an agreement with your spouse with any divorce issue before you take it to a judge, but sometimes that is not always feasible. If you find that property division is a sore subject with your soon-to-be-ex spouse, a knowledgeable Wheaton property division attorney may be able to help. At the Goostree Law Group, we will make sure your interests are protected in all aspects of your divorce, especially during property division. To schedule a free consultation, call our office today at 630-364-4046.