Your Fair Share Of The Marital Estate
Of all the issues that need to be resolved in a divorce, one of the most contested can be the division of property and debts. At Johnson Bigelbach Law, PLLC, we have experience handling the division of marital assets and debts for estates of all sizes.
Division of the Marital Estate
Minnesota is an equitable distribution state. This means the Court will attempt to divide a couple’s marital property and debt in a just and equitable manner. Generally, assets and debts that are acquired during the marriage are classified as “marital”. Assets and debts that are acquired prior to the marriage may be classified either entirely or partially as “non-marital”. Any asset or debt obtained during the marriage is presumed to be marital and is subject to division, unless proven otherwise.
While for many couples an equitable division of the marital estate may result in a relatively equal division, for others, an equal division simply is not equitable. In assessing whether a division of the estate is equitable, Courts will consider a variety of relevant factors such as the length of the marriage, amount and sources of income, employability and vocational skills, each party’s respective non-marital estates, and each party’s respective need and ability to meet such need independently of the other.
Property frequently divided in a dissolution of marriage action include:
- Real property, including homesteads, vacation homes/cabins, timeshares, and rental properties
- Businesses, in the event a party is self-employed or has an ownership interest in a business
- Retirement accounts, including defined benefit plans and defined contributions plans
- Vehicles, including automobiles, boats, ATVs, trailers, and snow mobiles
- Investment portfolios, such as stocks, bonds, mutual funds, debentures, treasury bills, and notes
- Financial accounts
- Life insurance policies
Additionally, the Courts will factor the parties’ marital debt into the overall division of property. If one party agrees to be, or is ordered to be, responsible for or to assume a larger share of the marital debt, it may then be equitable to award that party a larger share of the marital property. Likewise, if one party is relieved of a large portion of the marital debt, his or her share of the marital estate may need to be offset to compensate the other party accordingly.
Are High Value Assets Part Of Your Divorce?
Some marital estates can involve complex assets, including closely held businesses, stock options, and retirement assets. We have settled estates ranging in value from less than $100,000 to high-asset divorces involving millions of dollars. In every case, our goal is to see that you receive a fair settlement, no matter the size of your estate.
Expert Financial Valuation and Division
At Johnson Bigelbach Law, PLLC, our firm understands the value of accurately and efficiently assessing a party’s estate. We work closely with experts in a variety of areas, such as business valuation experts, accountants, and actuaries to ensure we utilize the necessary resources to accurately value your property and ensure you understand the value of your estate before it is potentially divided.
Discuss Your Case With An Attorney Today
Whether you are a business owner getting divorced, a long-term homemaker, or seeking a divorce from someone with substantial earning capacity, you can feel confident we will protect your property division rights. To schedule an initial consultation with one of our attorneys, call (651) 243-6240, or contact us online.