Property division is often one of the largest parts of a divorce case. To divide marital assets and debts, North Carolina uses a method called equitable distribution. “Equitable” means “fair”, so an “equitable distribution” means a fair distribution.
In a marriage, property owned by one or both spouses is categorized one of two ways:
Separate property falls into three categories:
North Carolina law assumes that a fair division of marital property is an equal division between the parties (i.e., a 50/50 split) unless an equal division would not be fair for some reason. There are a number of things a judge considers when deciding what a fair division is. An experienced family law attorney can help walk you through this process and explain your rights and options.
If both spouses are able to agree on how to division the marital assets and debts, the parties may be able to use a separation agreement. This agreement, or contract, spells out who gets what, and it can cover everything from bank accounts to retirement assets to physical property (like furniture). It can also cover who is responsible for paying off debts such as mortgages or credit cards. The family law attorneys at McNeil Law Firm can help you draft a separation agreement to protect you and your loved ones.
If the parties are not able to agree on how to divide the marital property, then a party can file a court action to have a judge decide who gets what. Before a court hearing is held on property division, some courts require people to have a session with a Family Financial Mediator to try and come to an agreement on how to divide their property. Mediation is often much less expensive than going to trial, and people usually find the resulting settlements much more satisfying. At McNeil Law Firm, we have decades of combined experience mediating property division issues as well as filing court actions, and we fight hard for our clients throughout the entire process.
If you’re going through a divorce or have issues or questions regarding the property division process, contact us today to schedule a consultation with a family law attorney. We’ll talk with you, answer your questions, and walk you through your rights and options. Give us a call at (919) 803-6778.
The information contained on this site is provided as a public service for informational purposes only and is not intended to be a comprehensive statement of the law. The reader is advised to check for changes to current law and to consult with a qualified attorney on any legal issue before taking action of any kind. The information presented on this site should not be construed to be formal legal advice or to create or imply the formation of a lawyer-client relationship between the reader and this firm.