Equitable Distribution of Marital Assets or Property Division During a Divorce
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New Jersey Statute and Case Law provide for distributing all assets and liabilities acquired during the marriage based on 15 different factors, including the duration of the marriage, the age of the parties, the income and earning capacity of each party. (N.J.S.A. 2A:34-23.1)
Equitable Distribution is the division of property when parties divorce. In most cases, property acquired by the parties, or either of them, during the marriage is subject to equitable distribution. Before the division, a determination is required as to what marital assets are subject to equitable distribution. For example, some assets are not subject to equitable distribution. Assets not subject to equitable distribution include property acquired by either party before the marriage and property either inherited or gifted to an individual during the marriage, as long as ownership remains in that spouse’s name and not commingled with marital property.
The filing date of the Complaint for Divorce is the cut-off date for equitable distribution. The valuation date for closely held assets may be the date of the Complaint, but assets that fluctuate in value may be valued on a date agreed upon by the parties or as of the date of distribution. What happens when the parties cannot agree on the value of the assets? In that case, appraisals for real estate, business valuations, artwork, retirement accounts, annuities, pensions, or other non-cash-based accounts, will need to be conducted. The parties can retain their individual experts (appraisers and accountants) to value the marital assets, can agree to joint experts, or the Court can appoint the required expert appraiser and accountants to value the marital assets.
Likewise, we determine all debts consisting of mortgages, credit cards, promissory notes, taxes and other financial obligations subject to equitable distribution between the parties.
Marital property does not include premarital property that is not commingled, gifts from third parties, inheritances and damages for pain and suffering from personal injury awards.
Once the assets are identified and valued, our goal is to work together towards reaching a resolution as to the distribution of marital assets that is fair and equitable. In rare cases, even with the help of their attorneys, or a mediator, the parties cannot agree on the division of assets. In that situation, Court conducts a trial and enter an order for the distribution of marital assets. Our goal at Lomberg Del Vescovo & Pollak, LLC is to help you resolve all of your issues in the most efficient, fair and expeditious manner possible.
If a Court has to decide on the division of assets during a divorce, they will consider the criteria set forth in the New Jersey Equitable Distribution Statute:
The specific equitable distribution of your marital property is unique to your specific needs and interests. Every situation is unique, and at Lomberg Del Vescovo & Pollak, LLC we will assist you in determining the assets subject to equitable distribution and a division of this property.
Based upon your respective circumstances, negotiating a division of the marital assets based on your individual needs and interests may be preferable to a Court’s ruling.
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