Morehead City Divorce Attorneys Advise on Property Division Issues
North Carolina family lawyers advocate for clients in negotiations and litigation
Deciding to end a marriage is an emotional decision but also a significant financial event. How marital assets and debts are divided in your divorce could have a pronounced effect on your well-being. At Carolina Law Group, headed by Tommy Kellis, we are seasoned divorce lawyers who represent spouses in discussions and court proceedings relating to marital property division. Our Morehead City firm assists clients throughout the Carteret County area, including residents of Lenoxville.
Is North Carolina a community property or equitable distribution state?
Like a majority of states, North Carolina employs the rule of equitable distribution when for property division during a divorce. This means that the judge determines what is fair when allocating marital assets and debts. In some cases, the court might rule that under the circumstances, it is best to give one spouse a much larger share than the other. This differs from the community property rule used in some states, where each asset is deemed to be owned equally by both parties.
What are the three types of property the court considers?
During a North Carolina divorce, assets owned by the parties are divided into the following three categories:
- Marital property — Once a couple has wed, assets that are acquired by either spouse typically become part of the divisible marital estate. This includes income, real estate, investments and personal property. It does not matter which person bought or received the particular item. If you have a prenuptial agreement in place, our family law attorneys can analyze the terms and outline how it might affect the distribution of property in your case.
- Separate property — Anything that either spouse owned individually prior to the marriage or received following the separation is classified as separate property. These assets do not belong to the marital estate but remain with party who bought or otherwise received them. A gift or inheritance given to one spouse can also be included within this category.
- Divisible property — The worth of stocks and some other marital property can rise and fall quickly. Divisible property is the term used under North Carolina law to describe assets for which the value could fluctuate between the separation date and the eventual marriage dissolution order. Treatment of divisible property depends on the individual circumstances. Both spouses might share in the gain if an asset that was jointly owned rises in value. However, if one party uses funds for their own purposes following the separation, their share of the marital estate could be adjusted downward.
Our firm works diligently to achieve a settlement on property division terms that ensures each party has a stake in the decision. However, if an agreement cannot be reached, we are proven trial litigators who will present a strong argument in court.
Speak to a Dedicated Morehead City Property Division Lawyer
Call 252-636-3737 to schedule your consultation and meet at the office nearest you.
What factors are considered in dividing property?
Any factor that the judge thinks is relevant can be used to make an equitable distribution decision. Common considerations in these cases include:
- The age and health of each spouse
- The parties’ financial holdings and earning capacities
- Which spouse will have primary custody of the children, if any
- The duration of the marriage
- The existence of retirement accounts, pension plans and other non-liquid assets
Each situation is unique and our firm uses a personal approach to pursue property division solutions that meet our clients’ needs.
Contact a Morehead City divorce lawyer for a consultation regarding property division
The Carolina Law Group advises clients from Morehead City, Lenoxville and other locations on North Carolina’s equitable distribution law and other aspects of the divorce process. To make an appointment for a meeting at our office, please call us at 252-636-3737 or contact us online.