Who Gets What After a Divorce is Finalized?
Anyone who has been through a divorce can tell you from experience that the division of assets between the respective spouses is a critical component of the process. Determining a “fair” distribution of the property accumulated during the marriage is an essential step in finalizing any divorce. The family law experts at Oxendine Law have considerable experience helping clients get what is rightfully theirs during a divorce.
Georgia is what is known as an “equitable distribution” state, meaning that the court will attempt to divide the assets fairly and equitably; which does not necessarily mean equally. The Court must first determine whether each specific account or property is marital property and separate property. Marital property includes all assets acquired during the marriage, with the exception of any items that were received as a gift from a third party or inheritance provided that they have remained separate and not commingled with marital funds. Separate property refers to any asset that belonged to either spouse prior to the marriage, as well as anything that was received by inheritance or as a gift from a third party, provided that they have remained separate and not commingled with marital funds. Gifts given between spouses are considered marital property.
Once a court determines which assets are considered marital, it must then determine how that property should be divided. In Georgia, courts consider several factors when making a fair and equitable division of marital property. These factors include:
- The financial status of each spouse including current income and future earning capacity
- The respective separate assets of each spouse
- If any alimony payments have been awarded to either spouse
- The conduct of each spouse towards each other during the time they were married, including any wrongful actions that resulted in a reduction of assets
- The future needs of each spouse, including retirement planning, childcare, and more
- Each spouse’s current and existing debts
How certain larger assets like a home and retirement accounts get divided will also be up to the court and are subject to the same determination process as smaller items. While this process can be a cause of anxiety and frustration, having an experienced and compassionate family law attorney on your side can make all the difference in the world. For more information, contact Oxendine Law at (770) 497-8688 today to schedule a meeting in-person, over the phone, or by video conference. Don’t forget to follow along with us on Facebook and Instagram for additional family law tips, news, videos, and more.