If you are separating from your spouse, you want the court to distribute the marital property fairly. In these cases, the family judge considers factors that can lead to an equal split or to one party receiving more property than the other in an equitable manner. For instance, you may be granted more if you have primary custody of your children or if you have spent the marriage making a home while your spouse earns a paycheck.
Obtaining a favorable division of assets in Chattanooga allows the family court to evaluate each spouse’s contributions to all aspects of the marriage. However, this is simplified with the help of a property division attorney who can identify, classify, and value assets before going to court. Allowing legal counsel to assist you may be in your best interests to quicken your dissolution.
Each spouse acquires marital assets during the marriage. Assets acquired before the marriage are separate unless the spouse who owns them contributes or commingles them with marital assets. Importantly, these cannot be untangled.
In some situations, a party might attempt to hide assets before divorce proceedings to keep them out of consideration. If these assets are not discovered, the unaware spouse will unwittingly be treated unfavorably.
An experienced local lawyer can oversee a forensic accountant or private investigator as they ferret out the hidden assets. If they are squandered, a legal representative could also help ensure the innocent spouse receives other property as compensation.
Once a couple files for divorce, the court issues a temporary injunction on some of the spouses’ actions to ensure a favorable division of marital assets. This injunction prevents the spouses from selling, gifting, transferring, borrowing against, concealing, or in any way disposing of marital assets unless the other spouse agrees or a court order is obtained.
However, the injunction does not stop the spouses from paying for their usual expenses to maintain the household. Both spouses during this injunction period must keep detailed records of those expenditures. If in doubt, an attorney in the area could explain how a party can comply with the court’s injunction so marital assets are divided favorably.
To obtain a favorable division of property, the divorce judge considers many factors listed in Tennessee Code Annotated § 36-4-121(c). Some of these factors include:
The list is not exclusive. The courts can consider any relevant factors, including the parties’ business holdings and whether one party caused the marital property to be dissipated. Favorable divisions occur when all the facts about finances and assets are available to both spouses.
Because you get only one chance to divide marital assets in a divorce, you want to obtain a favorable split as the financial foundation for your new life. Tell your family law attorney about any concerns you have with your former partner.
Our firm specializes in divorce actions, and we understand how to identify, classify, and value separate and marital assets. If you think your spouse is not forthcoming, we can help you obtain a favorable division of assets in Chattanooga. Call us today to get started.