When a couple acquires property or assets during a marriage, they are rarely thinking about what would happen to it if the marriage does not work out. Unfortunately, about 50 percent of marriages end in divorce, which is why it is important to understand how the dissolution of one’s marriage will affect the property they have accumulated over the years, in addition to the inheritance or property they came into the marriage with.
New York is an equitable division state. Not to be confused with equal, equitable means that each spouse will own the property he or she came into the marriage with and also a fair share of jointly owned property. The aim of equitable division is to achieve an outcome that is fair, according to what they put into the marriage and what they need after the marriage ends.
However, simply having one’s name on the title will not ensure that the person will retain it after the dust settles from property division. A judge will consider a number of factors when dividing assets, including the age and health of each spouse, the income and property of each party when they got married and also when they split, the alimony amount, the custodial parent’s requirements, and also the likely future needs of each spouse.
This means it is important for spouses to demonstrate their need and their legal claim to the property they are asking for. The factors listed above are not the only ones a judge considers when making property division determinations, which is why it might be beneficial to have an experienced attorney by one’s side helping determine what could be relevant and sway the court one way or another.