Deciding what to do about shared property can be one of the most divisive and stressful parts of getting a divorce. The situation is easier to handle with some form of guideline to follow, a mediator, or very good understanding of one another. Not everyone has these luxuries when dealing with property division arguments. However, there are still things that a couple can do to make the process go smoothly.
First and foremost, a divorcing couple should take the effort to become familiar with divorce laws in their state. Property division is managed on a local level rather than a federal level. What applies in one state may not hold true the next state over. Time and hassle can be saved by looking up the laws and knowing what to expect. It is also important for those looking up divorce and property division to focus on categories of assets, according to Cornell University. A list of things that property division laws may apply to include:
- Vacation residences
- Rental areas or houses
- Real estate and business assets
- Pensions and insurance policies
- Personal items such as vehicles, furniture or jewelry
All of these items are things that may be divided up between a couple, or lost to the opposite spouse. Determining who gets what can be aided along by closely inspecting the governing laws. Assets and debts may be divided equally between the parties by some state laws. Additionally, almost every state will leave out personal items from property division laws. This can include inheritances, gifts, and sentimental items.
While some arguments may be unavoidable in this sensitive topic, the amount of time spent on arguing can be reduced by being knowledgeable about local property division laws. This can in turn save a couple time, money and stress.