One of the most contentious aspects of a divorce can be the process of dividing property and assets. You and your spouse may vehemently disagree about what truly belongs to whom and what is fair. Importantly though, ultimate authority on such matters is given to the courts when determining property division in Chattanooga same-sex divorce cases.
Thus, it is important to have someone on your side who understands the state’s legal statutes and could fight for your rights in court. The guidance of a seasoned LGBTQ divorce attorney at our firm could make all of the difference in your case.
Tennessee is an equitable distribution state, which means that the court will determine what is fair and reasonable in their eyes, instead of it being an 50/50 even split. This process of asset distribution is the same for both opposite-sex and same-sex divorce cases in Chattanooga. The court’s goal is to give both parties fair financial footing as they leave the marriage and move forward individually. This may mean that property is split up 60/40, or an order of a forced sale of a home or business.
However, importantly, only marital property is eligible for distribution. According to Tennessee Code Annotated §36-4-121(b)(1)(A), marital property is all real and personal property that a couple acquires from the date of marriage until the date of final divorce or separation. A knowledgeable attorney at our firm could explain the state’s equitable distribution laws and what may be considered marital property in further detail during a private meeting.
When it comes to splitting up long-term savings accounts in an LGBTQ divorce case in Chattanooga, the status of the account is of the greatest importance. If the account is in both parties’ names, the court will determine what is equitable and make the split. If each spouse kept their savings separate and in an account in their own name, it would not be considered marital property, and thus, would not be eligible for distribution.
Investments fall under the same category as long-term savings accounts. If they are made jointly, then they will be divided equitably by the court. If investments are made solely in one person’s name, then they are ineligible for distribution.
Retirement funds, typically if they are individual, will be awarded individually. However, the court will take into consideration instances where one spouse worked, and thus built up a retirement account, while the other spouse stayed at home and cared for the house/kids. In such a situation, the court would likely divide the retirement account because the other spouse contributed to the marriage in just as meaningful of a way through being a caretaker.
When it comes to the marital residence, also known as the place where the couple lived while they were married, it does not matter who paid the mortgage or related-bills. The martial residence will be divided equitably in Chattanooga same-sex divorce cases because both spouses lived there throughout the course of the marriage, and thus it is considered martial property according to Tennessee state law.
If you need help convincing a court of your right to retain certain assets, get in touch with a skilled attorney at our firm. Our team of qualified legal professionals understand the laws surrounding property division in Chattanooga same-sex divorce cases and could help you protect your rights. Call today to get started.