Macomb County Property Settlement & Division of Assets Lawyer
Our Macomb County Lawyers Understand Property Settlement and Asset Division
The division of property, assets and debt during a divorce can have very serious financial and emotional consequences. We are here to help you understand how the division of assets works in a Michigan divorce, and to fight for your rights to ensure that you receive your fair share.
Generally, if two spouses can agree upon the division of the couple’s assets and debts the Court will approve their agreement. However, when a divorcing couple can not reach a mutually agreeable decision on their own, the Court must determine who gets what property.
This can result in very complicated legal matters, including complex calculations of the value of certain assets such as homes or businesses. Only an experienced divorce attorney will have the knowledge and the skill to present all of the facts and figures in a way that will ensure you obtain the best possible property settlement in your divorce.[one_half_last]
How Is Property Divided in A Divorce? – by Macomb County Lawyers
First the Court will determine which portions of the assets are the parties’ separate property, and which assets are part of the marital estate. Separate property will not have to be divided, but assets (and debts) that are part of the marital estate will be divided between the two spouses.
Assets owned by one spouse prior to the marriage (such as a business or a vacation home) will usually be considered the separate property of that spouse and will not have to be divided. The exception to this is: if the asset that was owned before the marriage was “merged” into the marital estate it will have to be divided. For example: if the non-owning spouse helped run the business, or made mortgage payments on the vacation home these assets will now probably be considered “marital assets” and will have to be divided.
Inheritances are also generally considered to be the separate property of the spouse who received the inheritance. However, if the inheritance is “merged” into the marital estate (such as put in a joint bank account and used to pay household bills) it may also have to be divided between the spouses.
In addition to the marital home, bank accounts, savings, cars and other personal property, and debt aquired during the marriage are marital property and will be split between the parties. Also subject to division by the Court are assets such as 401Ks and pensions. The general rule is that the spouse is entitled to the portion of the 401K or pension that accrued (was built up) during the course of the marriage.
Additionally, in some situations, a trial court may “invade” one spouse’s separate property and order that it be split, if it is deemed necessary to provide for the adequate post-divorce support of the other spouse.
Factors that are considered by the trial Court when dividing the marital estate include:
- The parties’ past relations and conduct;
- The duration of the marriage;
- The source of property;
- The parties’ contribution towards its acquisition;
- The needs of the parties;
- The parties’ earning ability;
- The cause for divorce;
- The age of the parties;
- The parties’ health or disabilities (if any);
- The parties’ life status;
- Necessities and circumstances of the parties;
- General principles of equity (fairness); and,
- Additional factors deemed relevant to a particular case.
As you can see, the division of property (and debts) is not a clear cut formula, but one that gives the Court considerable leeway to rule in favor of either party. For this reason it is essential that you have an aggressive and experienced family law attorney, who understands Michigan divorce law, fighting to protect your interests.
Experienced family law attorney Justin Vande Vrede and the lawyers at Lakeside Legal Group have successfully represented hundreds of individuals in their divorces. They will offer you compassionate advice & aggressive representation at affordable rates, to ensure that your rights are protected and you get the results you deserve.
For a FREE CONSULTATION with a Macomb County Property Settlement & Division of Assets Lawyer, call Lakeside Legal Group today: 586-469-0900.
Lakside Legal Group is a full service Michigan law firm providing representation in Macomb County, Oakland County, Wayne County and St. Clair County, including: Mt. Clemens, Warren, Sterling Heights, Madison Heights, Eastepointe, Saint Clair Shores, Roseville, Shelby Township, Chesterfield Township, Macomb Township, Grosse Pointe Shores, Grosse Pointe Farms, Grosse Pointe, Clinton Township, Harrison Township, Utica, Romeo, New Baltimore, Algonac, Armada, Port Huron, Imlay City, Rochester, Troy, Hazel Park, Clawson, Bloomfield Hills, Birmingham, Pontiac, Beverly Hills, Oak Park, Detroit, Southfield and Royal Oak.