Ambler Equitable Distribution Lawyers
Experienced Equitable Distribution Attorneys Provide Vigorous Representation to Ambler Clients for Division of Assets During Divorce
Under Pennsylvania law, when a married couple divorces, the court divides most or all the marital assets and liabilities in a process known as equitable distribution. Equitable distribution only requires a division that is “fair”; the division does not have to be “equal”. In an ideal scenario, a divorcing couple would reach a settlement as to how marital assets and liabilities are to be divided. However, in many divorce cases, especially after a long marriage, the couple is unable to agree and instead engages in disputes over how to divide marital assets and liabilities.
The effective Ambler, PA equitable distribution attorneys of Rubin, Glickman, Steinberg & Gifford know how difficult dividing you and your spouse’s hard-earned assets can be. Our lawyers will engage in the accounting of your marital assets and liabilities and ensure that your rights are protected and that we achieve your goals for equitable distribution.
Explaining Equitable Distribution in Ambler, PA
Pennsylvania sets forth by statute the factors that a court is to consider in determining an equitable distribution of marital assets and liabilities. It is important to note that whether one party is at fault for the divorce is not a factor in determining equitable distribution. The statutory equitable distribution factors include:
- The length of the marriage
- Whether either party has had prior marriages
- The age, health, education, sources of income, vocational skills, employability, financial situation, liabilities, and economic needs of each party
- The contribution of each party to the education, training, or increased earning potential of the other party
- Each party’s opportunity for future income and acquisition of assets
- Each party’s retirement, insurance, medical, and other benefits
- The contribution or dissipation of each party to the acquisition, maintenance, and growth of marital assets
- The standard of living during the marriage
- The economic circumstances of each party at the time of equitable distribution
- Tax ramifications for each asset to be divided or distributed
- The expense of sale, transfer, or liquidation of marital assets
- Whether a party is serving as the primary custodian of any dependent children
Only marital assets are subject to equitable distribution. Assets are not classified as marital assets if they are:
- Assets brought into the marriage by one spouse
- Inherited property or gifts kept separate during the marriage
- Assets specifically identified as the separate property of one spouse pursuant to a pre-nuptial or post-nuptial agreement
- Assets acquired by a spouse after the couple’s separation
Most equitable distribution disputes arise when assets subject to distribution have increased in value during the marriage (such as when a business owned and operated by one spouse becomes successful during the marriage), or when a spouse has used their separate property for common marital purpose (such as using an inheritance to purchase the family home).
Dedicated Divorce Lawyers Fight to Obtain Favorable Equitable Distributions in Ambler Divorce Cases
Equitable distributions can be a very complicated process, especially after a long marriage when the parties have significant, complex assets, like businesses or investment portfolios. The dedicated divorce attorneys of Rubin, Glickman, Steinberg & Gifford will help walk you through the equitable distribution process to hopefully reach a fair settlement with your spouse that fulfills your goals for equitable distribution. Any successful equitable distribution requires a full accounting of both your marital and your separate, exempt assets. Examples of common marital assets include:
- The family home
- Real estate holdings
- Investment portfolios
- Retirement portfolios and pensions
- Life insurance and annuities
- Ownership interests in businesses
In addition to the division of assets, equitable distribution also involves the distribution of marital liabilities. Such liabilities include mortgages, car loans, taxes, and credit card debt. Credit card debt can be a marital liability even if the card is only in one spouse’s name, so long as the debt was incurred to support the marriage. Other personal loans may be classified as marital liabilities if they too were incurred to support the marriage.
Contact Our Results-Focused Ambler Equitable Distribution Attorneys for a Case Consultation
The Ambler equitable distribution lawyers of Rubin, Glickman, Steinberg & Gifford have the dedication and experience you need in a legal advocate who will be focused on obtaining the most favorable equitable distribution possible for you. Our attorneys will work with you to understand your goals for equitable distribution, especially to identify any assets that have sentimental value to you or have a higher priority for you. We will also aggressively work to ensure that your spouse is not hiding any assets to deny you a fair equitable distribution of all marital assets. Contact the equitable distribution attorneys of Rubin, Glickman, Steinberg & Gifford today for a free initial consultation if you are in the midst of equitable distribution in an Ambler, PA divorce.
Frequently Asked Questions About Equitable Distribution in Ambler, PA
Personal property that you owned before your marriage is not subject to equitable distribution unless you used marital funds on such property or otherwise commingled that property with the marital estate. Our equitable distribution attorneys can argue against the inclusion of your personal property that you owned before your marriage into the marital estate. Our firm works with financial experts who can trace the sources and uses of funds during your marriage. With expert financial evidence, we can prove that your separately-owned personal property was not commingled with the marital estate and therefore is not subject to equitable distribution.
Whether the home you owned before your marriage but that you shared with your spouse during your marriage is subject to equitable distribution is dependent on a number of factors, such as the length of your marriage and how long you and your spouse lived in the home together. The court may decide that a portion of your house’s value is your separate, personal property, while another portion of the value is part of the marital estate and subject to equitable distribution. Any appreciation of the house during your marriage may also be subject to equitable distribution. If you and your spouse have children that still live in the home, the parent who receives primary physical custody may be allowed to continuing living in the home after the divorce. Ultimately, your dispute centers around the value of your home, rather than the home itself. Our equitable distribution attorneys can provide advice with respect to your home and equitable distribution that is also based on your goals for equitable distribution and the specific circumstances of the marital estate.