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Raleigh, NC Property Division Attorneys

Charlotte NC Marital Asset Division Attorneys

Lawyers for the Equitable Distribution of Marital Assets and Debts in North Carolina

When you decide to get divorced, there are likely to be many issues to resolve. If you and your spouse have children, you will need to determine arrangements for child custody and how much time each of you will spend with the children. You will also need to consider a number of financial concerns, including how your marital assets will be divided between you and your spouse. If you cannot reach an agreement regarding the division of your property and debts, the court will make decisions for you based on the provisions contained in North Carolina law. The skilled attorneys at the Vasquez Law Firm, PLLC can help you protect your rights and best interests throughout the asset division process.

Identifying the Marital Estate

The first step in the asset division process is identifying assets and debts that comprise your marital estate. Under the law in North Carolina, the marital estate includes nearly all assets or debts acquired by either your or your spouse after the date of your marriage and before your date of separation. Assets or debts acquired prior to the marriage, as well as the proceeds of selling property that was acquired before the marriage, are generally considered non-marital and, therefore, not subject to being divided during your divorce.

Wake County Attorneys for Evaluating Marital Assets

The next step in dividing marital property is determining the value of each asset, along with the overall value of the marital estate. Some evaluations are relatively straightforward, such as the contents of a savings account or the current resale value of a car. Others, however, are more complex. For example, the marital home, retirement investments, and business interests may include both marital and non-marital "portions," based on how and when the assets were acquired and how they were maintained during the marriage. Each portion must be properly evaluated before the assets can be divided. A qualified divorce attorney can help you make sense of even the most complicated financial situations.

Equitable Distribution

The final step in the process of allocating marital assets is the actual allocation itself. North Carolina is an "equitable distribution" state, which means that the marital estate is to be divided fairly between you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse—not necessarily equally. Under North Carolina law, you and your spouse are encouraged to develop a fair property settlement, usually with the help of an attorney. If you cannot do so, however, the court will determine an equitable split of your marital assets based on a number of factors surrounding your marriage and the pending divorce.

These factors include but are not limited:

  • The contributions you each made to the marital estate, including contributions made by a stay-at-home parent or homemaker
  • Each party's age, health, occupation, employability, and financial situation, both current and foreseeable
  • Your arrangements for child custody and who should occupy the marital home
  • How you will be dividing parental responsibilities and parenting time
  • The complexity of evaluating and dividing a particular asset or investment
  • Anything else the court finds to be relevant to your situation

It is important for you to remember that North Carolina law does not provide judges with specific guidance on how to divide marital assets beyond requiring that the allocation be fair and equitable. This means that if you wish to keep a certain asset or you want to be sure that your interests are fully protected, attempting to negotiate a settlement with your spouse could be your best course of action. With more than 35 years of family law experience, our attorneys are fully prepared to help facilitate such an agreement. If reaching a settlement is not possible, we have the knowledge and litigation skills to take your case to trial as well.

Schedule an Appointment Today

For more information about dividing marital assets during a divorce in North Carolina, contact the team at the Vasquez Law Firm, PLLC today. Call 919-533-7000 or 919-989-3000 for a free initial consultation. Our firm serves clients in Raleigh, Smithfield, Charlotte, Mecklenburg County, Johnston County, Wake County, and the surrounding areas. Hablamos Español.

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