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Property division: You may not get half of your marital property

During a marriage, people typically accumulate property and various types of assets as a couple. As you might expect, this is known as marital property. Should divorce land on the table, dividing this property can feel like a nightmare.

Florida is an equitable distribution state, which means it is up to the court to decide how the couple's property is divided in a divorce. The term:"equitable distribution" often brings to mind an even 50-50 property split, but that is not necessarily the case.

In Florida, a family law judge will distribute the marital property in a way that he or she deems to be a fair and equitable. In many cases, this means one spouse may get a larger share of the property than the other spouse receives. Judges consider several factors when making this decision. You will find information about some of these factors in the following section.

  • Health: If a spouse is ill or in poor physical condition, he or she may receive a higher share
  • Differences in earning capacity: When one spouse has a greater earning capacity, he or she may receive a lesser share
  • Age differences: In marriages where a spouse is significantly older than the other is, he or she may receive a greater share of property
  • Fault: Even though Florida is a no-fault state, differences in property division might occur if one spouse's actions or behaviors lead to divorce

Property division can be one of the most contentious aspects of divorce. Both parties want their fair share of the property they have acquired as a couple. A great way to make sure your interests and your rights remain protected is to seek advice from a family law attorney about your divorce.

Source: FindLaw, "Florida Marital Property Laws," accessed Jan. 04, 2018

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