Though couples may seem happy from the outside, each couple is dealing with their own struggles. There comes a point when some may decide they are no longer compatible with one another. Just like no two marriages are the same, no two divorces are similar to one another. Even two partners married to one another may want different things from the divorce.
Last week's post detailed the reasons couples might want to sign a prenuptial agreement before they get married in Texas. With more couples in debt than ever before, marrying parties want to know who will assume these obligations if the marriage doesn't work out. They also want to be sure that if their business becomes the next 'Etsy', their sudden wealth will be protected. A prenuptial agreement is one way to take property division out of the court's hands and put it in the couple's.
Where the 1970s saw couples getting married for romantic notions-eight out of 10 people were married by the time they were thirty-years-old. Today, the reasons couples tie the knot have changed, as practicalities have entered the picture. With the same percentage of people now not getting married until they are 45-years-old, it seems like people are waiting until they are financially secure. This means by the time these couples are getting married, they have substantial careers or businesses that they want to protect.
When a New York State couple divorces, there is often confusion as to how their property will be divided. Issues frequently arise surrounding marital property, non-marital property and other factors. Understanding how this will be settled is imperative to a case and can save time, money and the energy that comes from a longstanding dispute.
There are many issues that come to the forefront when a New York couple decides to get a divorce. Of highest priority is children, custody, the dividing of assets, bank accounts and the valuation of property. Next, there are other matters, like retirement accounts, that must be navigated. As the divorce proceeds or is completed outright, there are strategies that couples should take with their retirement accounts.
People often say that marriages require work to be successful and, when a person considers the sacrifices individuals must make for the greater good of their relationships, then the truth of the statement can be understood. However, some Mohawk Valley readers also know that for some couples, it does not matter how much effort they put into their marriages: their relationships are simply not salvageable.
Whether a couple will experience a simple property division or a complex one during their divorce will depend entirely on the assets and debts the individuals hold at the time their marriage comes to an end. In New York, divorcing couples are subject to equitable division laws that govern how the items they own will be divided. During the equitable division process, a couple's assets will be evaluated and the court will divide them between the parties in a way that seems fair.
Readers of this Oneida County family law blog may not know that New York follows equitable division laws when it comes to separating the property of married people during their divorces. Equitable division is not the same thing as equal division, which implies that the parties leaving the marriage will receive the same amount of money and property when their divorce is finalized. Rather, equitable division requires a careful balancing of ownership, need and fairness to ensure that both parties exit their relationship with sufficient resources to thrive.
Property subject to marital distribution is not identified by what it is, but rather by how it is owned. Generally, separate property is the property that an individual acquires before he or she is married, that he or she does not comingle with his or her spouse, or property that he or she gets after he or she is married but that he or she acquired with his or her own separate money. A New York couple can own property together if they acquired it during their marriage or if it starts as separate property but use it in support of their marital relationship.
Even though a divorce is the legal termination of a marriage, there are many divorce-related matters that formerly married parties must continue to address after their unions end. In New York, former couples may find themselves renegotiating child support payments or the schedules on which they share custody of their kids. They may even need to return to court to modify or end the payment of spousal support from one former partner to the other.