Equitable Distribution Lawyers in Skippack, PA
Family Lawyers Provide Dedicated and Results-Focused Representation to Clients in the Equitable Distribution Process
When a couple has been married for an extended period of time, they have likely accumulated significant assets between themselves. Dividing those assets during a divorce can be a complicated and contentious process. Equitable division of marital assets (and marital liabilities) in a divorce requires either a property settlement agreement between the divorcing couple or an order of the court. If a couple decides to engage the court to decide the division of marital assets, they should keep in mind that Pennsylvania is an equitable distribution state. This means that the division of assets is only supposed to be fair, rather than perfectly equal. In cases where a divorcing couple has complex assets, reaching a resolution on the equitable distribution question may require obtaining expert appraisals or changing the title to assets.
At Rubin, Glickman, Steinberg & Gifford P.C., our family law attorneys are ready to help you through the equitable distribution process to divide your marital assets and liabilities in a way that works with your goals and protects your future interests. We take the time to discuss your goals and interests with you, specifically identifying assets for which you wish to retain ownership for financial or strategic reasons or assets that may have a sentimental value to you. We know it can be difficult to reach an agreement with your spouse for an equitable distribution that meets your goals, especially when it requires you to turn over your hard-earned assets. If you are in the midst of a divorce proceeding in Skippack and have questions about equitable distribution, contact us today to set up a consultation with one of our knowledgeable equitable distribution attorneys. We can be reached at 215-822-7575 or send us an email through our Contact Us page.
How Equitable Distribution Divides Marital Assets and Liabilities
In the best of cases, a divorcing couple will be able to agree on how to divide their assets and liabilities, and will only need the intervention of the court to reduce their agreement to an enforceable order. However, disputes can arise during the settlement negotiation process over what property constitutes marital property and what property is the separate property of each spouse. Equitable distribution is only concerned with marital property, which can include:
- Real estate
- Investments, including stocks and bonds
- Retirements and pensions
- Deferred compensation
- Insurance and annuities
- Household goods
- Business ownership interests
In addition to dividing marital assets, equitable distribution also seeks to separate marital liabilities, such as:
- Mortgages on the marital home and other jointly owned property
- Car loans
- Tax liabilities
- Credit card debt, especially where incurred to support the marriage or the family
It is a common misconception that how an asset or a liability is titled is determinative as to whether it is included in equitable distribution. Instead, courts look to from where the asset or liability was acquired, when it was acquired, and what it was acquired for.
Skilled Equitable Distribution Attorneys Help Clients Address Issues in Divorce Proceedings
The equitable distribution process can easily cause conflicts between a divorcing couple, even if both spouses have consented to the divorce and want to move on with their lives. It is critical that you have an experienced, trustworthy skippack divorce lawyer on your side throughout the equitable distribution process. Our attorneys are well-versed in handling cases where a couple simply needs help reducing their agreement to legal writing. But we are also capable of helping clients with issues that arise in equitable distribution, such as:
- One spouse having transferred or concealed assets
- The use of separate funds to purchase the marital home or other marital property, or the commingling of separate property with marital property
- The need to obtain an expert appraisal of complex or unique property, such as a business ownership interest
The court usually does not take fault for the divorce into account when determining equitable distribution, unless that marital misconduct somehow diminished the value of marital assets, such as a spouse’s wrongful actions diminishing the value of a business jointly owned by the spouses.
Contact Us to Schedule a Consultation to Discuss Equitable Distribution in Your Skippack Divorce Case
Our experienced equitable distribution attorneys at Rubin, Glickman, Steinberg & Gifford P.C. strive to ensure that any conflicts arising between you and your spouse during the equitable distribution process are resolved as efficiently as possible. We understand that quickly and effectively resolving issues in the equitable distribution process is key to achieving a favorable outcome for you. If you have questions about or need help with the equitable distribution process, call us or email us today to schedule a confidential consultation with an experienced equitable distribution attorney to discuss your rights and options.
Frequently Asked Questions about Equitable Distribution in Skippack, Pennsylvania
FAQ: What should my spouse and I do if we cannot reach mutual agreement over dividing our assets and liabilities?
At Rubin, Glickman, Steinberg & Gifford P.C., we do everything we can to help you reach an agreement with your spouse regarding equitable distribution, if that is your wish. However, in some cases, divorcing couples simply are unable to reach agreement over division of assets. Sometimes mediation is able to break a deadlock between conflicted spouses. If mediation fails or spouses choose not to use mediation, our attorneys are prepared to submit the issue of equitable distribution to the court, who will make a final determination. We will make the most persuasive arguments possible for our clients; however, once a couple decides to submit the issue to the court, the judge will ultimately decide the equitable distribution based on his or her view of the facts and circumstances of the case.
FAQ: Can my spouse and I use the same attorney to draft our equitable distribution agreement?
You and your spouse will not be permitted to use the same attorney to represent you both in your equitable distribution agreement. Conflicts can easily arise during settlement negotiations, which would present a conflict of interest for an attorney representing both spouses. An attorney is required to act in his or her client’s best interest, which can become impossible if two clients develop interests that are adverse to one another.