In community property states, asset division in divorce is set by statute and is very precise. According to Utah law, however, no such precision is required.
The law of Utah states that asset division in a divorce must be fair and equitable. The division needn’t be equally split 50/50, and courts have a wide range of discretion in deciding what sort of division is fair.
In making a property division, a court might consider the length of the marriage, the assets and debts the husband and wife brought into the marriage, and their earning capacity, as well as more personal factors like the health and age of the parties at the time of the divorce.
Frequently, the parties can agree on a property division before filing for divorce or soon thereafter. In such cases, it may be sufficient to consult Heber lawyers who handle divorce to have a stipulated agreement drafted.
The agreement will then be presented to the judge for his consideration. After review, if the judge agrees that the division is fair and equitable, it will be entered as a court order, and the case will be settled. The judge still has the power to enter a different division of assets if he believes that the original proposal of the parties is somehow unfair or inequitable.
Asset Division in a Divorce
To make a division of assets divorce, the parties must list all of their assets and liabilities. The report of assets filed with the court must include all the physical assets of the parties, like cars, land, houses, and valuables.
The list must also include financial assets like bank accounts, stocks, and bonds. Other assets like pensions and annuities must be included.
The report isn’t limited to property owned solely by the husband or wife. If one spouse is in a business partnership, the partnership assets must be described as well.
Challenges in Division of Assets Divorce
Many assets, like cash, offer a simple means of division. Others, like a house or real estate, offer few choices which may not be very attractive to either party. A house cannot be divided in half. It must be either sold and the proceeds divided, or one party must take ownership of the house, and the other must be awarded some combination of cash and other property to make a fair division.
If one party or the other brought an asset, like an heirloom, into the marriage, or if a party built up a particular asset, like a farm or business, the court may take that into account as an important factor in making the distribution.
The work of the parties needn’t be purely financial or tangible. A spouse who serves the family as a homemaker, caregiver, or parent adds considerable value to the family and will be entitled to consideration in the division of property.
A Heber Utah Attorney Can Help
While most divorce division of assets is reached without extensive trial of the issues, an attorney is often needed to mediate between the parties in negotiating a settlement. If, after negotiation, the parties are still unable to reach an agreement, the court will have to settle the matter. A capable attorney can present the position of their client to the court and help resolve the matter.
Divorce is an emotional issue and is fraught with difficulties already. The division of property shouldn’t be one of them.
An experienced Heber Utah attorney, like the Gordon Law Group, has a thorough knowledge of the laws involved in dividing assets in a divorce. If you are involved in a divorce or are considering a divorce and want to know what your options are, contact the Gordon Law Group today for a consultation.