If both parties in a divorce cannot agree to terms for dividing marital assets and debts, New Jersey courts will divide it using "equitable distribution" guidelines. It is important to emphasize that this means marital assets and debts will be divided in a manner that is equitable and fair, but not necessarily evenly.
At the law firm of Schepisi & McLaughlin, P.A., in Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey, our experienced family law attorneys strive to resolve property division matters through negotiation and mediation rather than litigating. This allows both parties to retain more control over the final outcome.
We realize that not all parties are able to reach agreement in this area, however. In those situations, we are always prepared to protect our clients' rights and advocate aggressively for them in court.
What Is Marital Property?
Any property or debt that was acquired during the marriage regardless of whose name is on the title is considered marital property. Property that an individual owned prior to the marriage is generally considered separate property. Inheritance and gifts from a third party are generally considered to be separate property and not subject to equitable distribution.
Our lawyers will carefully review all records to determine what property is marital property and what is separate. If you have accumulated substantial assets during your marriage, valuing and dividing that property can be complex. We work with property valuation experts, forensic accountants and other specialists to gain an accurate value assessment for parties involved in a high net worth divorce.
What Factors Impact The Division Of Property?
The court considers a number of factors when determining how to divide marital assets and debts. These include:
- The length of the marriage
- The age and health of both parties
- Both parties' economic circumstances
- The standard of living set during the marriage
- Any contributions one spouse made to furthering the other spouse's career
- Whether one party will receive primary custody of minor children, making it more appropriate to stay in a family home
We Will Protect Your Rights Regarding Property Division
Our priority at Schepisi & McLaughlin, P.A., is to put you in the best possible position to begin your post-divorce life. The division of marital property and debt plays an important role in achieving that goal.
To speak with an experienced property division lawyer serving Bergen County and beyond, call or email us and we will schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.