During the official proceedings required to divorce in Connecticut, many issues have the potential to become complex and contentious. One such example is the division of marital assets and debts. This process can quickly become antagonistic for many reasons. Many assets—from homes and cars to shared businesses and personal wealth—were acquired and treasured by both parties during the marriage. Fortunately, there are laws in place to help determine a fair and equitable outcome.
Legal Support for Windsor, CT Property Division Proceedings
The family law experts at CT Divorce Mediation Centers are uniquely positioned to help you navigate the complexities of property division. We understand that this process can be difficult to navigate on your own, and our Windsor property division and asset division attorneys can ensure a fair division of property with divorce mediation. Should litigation become necessary, our attorney team is experienced in Connecticut property division law and can provide you with the guidance you need to reach a fair outcome in court. Our legal services are specifically designed to relieve some of the stress and responsibilities associated with this transition, whether you require mediation, litigation, or both.
What Is the Legal Division of Property?
The legal division of property refers to how Connecticut law and family court divides property and asset responsibilities and rights during divorce. The state of Connecticut has created property division laws that help guide the process and provide a framework for a fair and equitable division of both assets and debts. If you and your spouse cannot arrive at a property division agreement prior to your divorce hearing, a family court judge will make the final determination according to CT law.
The courts will examine numerous factors that pertain to the financial situation of the couple. Family court will also determine whether any property was inherited or gifted to either party during the marriage. In the end, the goal is a mutually agreeable decision that serves each individual well.
Is Connecticut Defined as a Community Property State?
Connecticut is not a community property state but an equitable property division state. This means that marital assets are not automatically divided on a 50/50 basis. Rather, the court will look at a variety of factors to determine a fair and equitable division of assets. It is important to note that this does not mean the courts will divide assets equally but equitably, using a variety of factors to determine what each spouse is entitled to.
Some common considerations when dividing property include:
- The length of the marriage
- Each party’s financial situation and/or earning potential after divorce
- Any property brought into the marriage
- The value of each asset
- Any debts or liabilities either party is responsible for paying before the division of assets will be finalized
- The influence of any child support, spousal support, or any child custody law arrangements
The expertise of a Windsor property division lawyer can be extremely valuable when navigating the complex process of property division. At CT Divorce Mediation Centers, we have the experience and knowledge to anticipate and address any potential challenges that may arise.
What Are the Stages of Property Division in Connecticut?
Property division proceedings follow a uniform set of steps designed to help parties reach a fair outcome.
- Comprehensive Asset Identification
The first step in the process is for each party to compile a complete list of all assets and debts. This includes any asset or debt that was acquired during the marriage, as well as any premarital assets or debts that may have been brought into the marriage. A complete listing of all assets and debts is crucial for determining an equitable division.
- Evaluation of Assets
The next step is to evaluate each asset and determine if it is considered marital or separate property. In some states, certain assets are automatically deemed separate, such as any inheritance given only to one spouse or pre-existing assets brought into the marriage. Others, like family-owned businesses, may be more difficult to classify. However, it is important to note that, unlike other equitable division states, the Connecticut family court considers all assets to be marital assets and reserves the right to distribute all assets during property division.
- Valuation of Assets
The value of each asset is important to determine a fair division, which is why we take the time to conduct a thorough evaluation process. This process includes careful consideration of fair market value for most tangible assets and extensive business valuation for any business holdings. To achieve a thorough valuation, it is often necessary to consult with expert witnesses that can provide fair-market or other types of value estimates.
- Step Four: Distribution of Assets
Once the assets have been properly identified and valued, they are then distributed to each party in an equitable manner. This step is important to consider when the division of assets includes real estate, which may require a more complex process that involves valuation and division by acreage or square footage. It is also critical to note that in Connecticut, inheritances and gifts are subject to distribution during this stage.
The CT Divorce Mediation Centers team can provide you with the support and guidance you need through every step of the property division process. We understand the importance of reaching a fair outcome, and our experience in Connecticut law ensures that you can achieve an equitable distribution of property.
Characteristics of an Exceptional Property Division Lawyer
If you are facing divorce and must divide your assets, it is crucial to work with an exceptional Windsor property division lawyer. Here are some of the key characteristics to consider when beginning your search:
- Experience. The lawyer you choose should have extensive experience with Connecticut equitable property division proceedings, as these proceedings differ from neighboring equitable distribution states.
- Family law attorney expertise. Look for a law firm that offers exclusively family law services, particularly those dealing with divorce. Divorce and family law attorneys have unique expertise when it comes to these complex case types.
- Integrity. Work with an honest and ethical lawyer to ensure your best interests are always at the forefront of every step in your divorce.
- Sensitivity. You need a compassionate lawyer who understands that you are going through a difficult time and will remain sensitive regarding your emotions.
Contact a Windsor Property and Assets Division Divorce Attorney
Although the state of Connecticut reserves the right to divide separate property, securing a property division attorney is your best opportunity to keep valuable marital assets. For an exceptional Windsor property division lawyer, look no further than CT Divorce Mediation Centers. We have the experience and expertise you need to get through this process with as little stress as possible. Contact us today to request a consultation.