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Is Everything Split 50/50 In a Divorce?

Posted on February 15, 2018 12:09pm
Is Everything Split 50/50 In a Divorce?

When it comes to property division in a divorce, everything is rarely split down the middle. There is no standard answer when it comes to how properties and assets are divided in a divorce, but there are set rules that dictate how property division is decided. If you are worried about what will happen to your possessions in your divorce, make sure you understand how Oregon courts handle property division.

There are two different types of assets in a marriage: marital property and separate property. Marital property includes all shared assets and those you acquired during your marriage, such as your house, vehicles, and any joint accounts. Separate property includes possessions owned by only one spouse, such as inherited items, gifts, or properties owned before the marriage.

Equitable Distribution

Oregon is an equitable distribution state. This means all marital property will be “fairly divided” between each spouse. However, this does not mean that each spouse will get exactly half of the assets. Fair may not always mean equal. The court will evaluate the contributions of each spouse, including financial support as well as time spent caring for any shared children from the marriage.

Factors to Consider

Property Ownership:

When dividing assets, the court will divide separate property from marital property. Separate property is usually safe from distribution, although certain properties that you may consider separate might actually be presumed to be marital property by Oregon courts. If the court believes that each spouse contributed equally to a property during the marriage, it will be considered a marital asset, even if the title says it only belongs to one party.

Homemaker Contribution:

The court will evaluate the contributions of each spouse, including financial support as well as time spent caring for the home or for children. Even if one spouse never contributed financially, if he or she stayed home to care for the home or children, the court will still consider this a contribution to the marriage.

Other Costs:

Before final decisions are made, the court will also consider the costs involved in the assets, such as upkeep, taxes, and so on. If these costs are anticipated, the court will take them into account before dividing up the property. Also, if there are children in the marriage and they have outstanding medical bills or other important expenses, these will be factored into the division.

Spousal Support:

Although spousal support is typically decided on after properties are divided, the two go hand in hand to a certain extent. Spousal support payments may be ordered by the court if one spouse is not able to sustain the same lifestyle in divorce as he or she had during the marriage. These payments are intended to be temporary until the receiving spouse is able to earn more independently. However, the amount and duration of spousal support will depend greatly on the standard of living during the marriage, the length of the marriage, the ages of each spouse, as well as the earning capacity of each spouse.

Property division in a divorce is usually a very tricky business. While these standard rules can act as a rough guide, it is always best to seek counsel with an experienced attorney to obtain guidance pertaining to your specific circumstances.

If you need assistance with property division and other aspects of your divorce, our divorce attorneys can help. Contact McKinley Irvin in Oregon for legal help regarding your divorce.
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