Property in Divorce
It is common for divorcing couples to disagree not only about how their property should be divided, but also what the value and nature of that property is. If you and your spouse have accumulated real estate, investment accounts, small businesses, stock options, and retirement accounts over the course of your marriage, you may wish to consult a family law attorney about the effects of divorce and property division on your assets. The Monmouth County property division lawyers at Goldstein Law Group can guide you through this complex process, protecting your interests throughout the process of division.Property Division in a New Jersey Divorce
In New Jersey, marital property, including both assets and debts, must be equitably distributed between the spouses. This does not mean that the property will be split evenly, but rather that it will be split fairly. Each spouse keeps his or her own separate assets.
Since what is "equitable" or fair may be contested, distribution of property can get complicated during divorce. Among the factors the court will consider in determining what is equitable include the length of the marriage, the couple's standard of living during the marriage, spousal health and age, income or property brought into the marriage, any written agreements related to the property, any training or education received during the marriage and contributions to that training or education made by the other spouse, each spouse's income and earning capacity, tax consequences, who has physical custody of the children, debts and liabilities, and more.
When the marital estate includes high value assets, such as a successful business or substantial investment accounts, or when it includes assets that have not fully matured, such as stock options or retirement accounts, it may be necessary to work with appraisers and accountants. Experts can determine the true value of the property.
The court will look at intangible assets and assets that have not fully matured on a case-by-case basis. The main question it will try to answer is whether these assets were acquired because of services rendered during the marriage. For example, if you are awarded stock options of a publicly held corporation when you start a job and you get married later, the stock options may be separate property. On the other hand, if you were married and then started a job with stock options that are not vested, the stock acquired during the marriage may be marital property, while any stock given after a legal separation or divorce likely will be separate property.
Similarly, there may be significant tax consequences of any property division. We advise our clients on the tax consequences of receiving certain assets that they want and whether it is better for tax planning purposes to transfer assets to the other spouse or sell them. We can also advise as to how income tax will be affected by decisions related to child support and alimony.Consult a Property Division Lawyer in Monmouth County
At Goldstein Law Group, we understand how hard our clients worked to accumulate their property before and during a marriage, and we strive to protect those assets during divorce proceedings. Our divorce attorneys can help people divide their assets with a former spouse. Contact us at 732-967-6777 or via our online form for a free consultation with a Monmouth County property division attorney. Our main office is located in Old Bridge, and we also serve clients from Manalapan, Freehold, East Brunswick, and many of the surrounding communities.