Call Today: (201) 445-8381
Call Today: (201) 445-8381

Division of Assets

Hackensack Property Distribution Attorney

Copy of asset-preservationRepresenting NJ clients facing Bergen County distribution of assets issues

When a couple divorces, one of the most important topics that need to be addressed is the distribution of assets. When each party feels entitled to a certain split of assets and their opinions differ, this topic can quickly lead to a contested and heated court battle. New Jersey is an equitable distribution state. Equitable distribution is the just and fair allocation of assets. This does not always mean an equal split. New Jersey courts often explore alternative dispute resolution to address property distribution as it saves the couple and the government a lot of time and money. When an agreement cannot be accomplished outside of court, the couple may have to let a judge decide the matter for them. If you need a law firm to represent your interests in and out of court, contact Debra F. Schneider, Esq. for effective and experienced representation.

Marital vs. separate property

A New Jersey court must divide assets in an equitable fashion. In order to do so, it needs to establish the difference between marital and separate property. Though the differences are a bit more complicated, simply put:

  • Marital property- any assets or debt acquired during the marriage or separate property brought into the marriage and converted to marital property.
  • Separate property- any assets or debt acquired before the marriage not converted to marital property or property agreed to stay separate during the marriage.

Equitable distribution

Once the court establishes marital and separate property, it will assign a value to the property deemed marital. The court will consider many factors when equitably allocating the marital property, including:

  • Each party’s age and heath
  • Each party’s contribution to the marital property
  • Each party’s financial situation
  • Any possible tax consequences of the property distribution

Once the value is assigned to marital property, the court will decide what is just and fair to each party and allocate the assets and debts in an equitable fashion. It is important to note that marital fault will usually have no bearing on the process of property distribution. Economic fault is another story. If a party purposefully wasted or hid assets in retaliation for the divorce or to manipulate the court’s findings, a judge may rule against them and adjust the allocation in favor of the other spouse.

Alternative dispute resolution may be the right option

Mediation or collaborative law may be a good option for people who otherwise would have an uncontested divorce. Through mediation or collaborative law, couples can come to an agreement outside of court that best serves their needs by saving time and money and leaving decisions about their future in their hands. When a couple can decide on important factors for themselves, the results are easier to bear because their fate is not in the hands of a judge. Often times, New Jersey courts will recommend this option as it may best serve all parties and the government as well. If a couple cannot come together and engage in alternative dispute resolution, their issues may have to be resolved by a judge.

Contact a Bergen County property distribution attorney

Debra F. Schneider, Esq. is honored to serve Hackensack, Bergen County and all of New Jersey with quality legal services regarding divorce and family law. If you are facing a heated battle over property distribution, contact an attorney to represent your interests. If you need a lawyer to work tirelessly to save you money and time while you focus on the future, contact the law office of Debra F. Schneider, Esq.

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