In a typical marriage, both individuals enter with property of their own. During the marriage, the couple may accumulate more property and intangible assets. A family law attorney can help you protect your separate property and your share of the marital property.
One of the most compelling questions for clients is ‘What property am I going to maintain if and when my marriage ends?’ I help them understand what is marital property and what is separate and help them protect what is legally theirs.
Ohio Division of Assets: The Basics
- The court must determine what is marital property and what is separate property before it allocates it.
- In simplest terms, marital property is property and/or income that was acquired during the marriage. Generally, the court identifies everything that is marital property and divides it equally between the parties. In a case of financial misconduct, where one spouse has wasted significant marital assets, the court can give the other spouse a higher percentage of the remaining marital assets.
- Separate property is either income you earned or an asset you received before the marriage. It also includes funds or property you inherited before or during the marriage.
- A prenuptial agreement is one way to protect your separate property. It is a document that is written and executed before the marriage to indicate how property will be divided if the marriage legally ends. It is typically used for parties who have a large disparity of income and/or assets or who have been married before. Both parties need to fully disclose everything they own and owe in order for the document to be legally enforceable.
- A temporary restraining order is a tool that can protect marital and separate property during a divorce or legal separation; it cannot be used with a dissolution or collaborative divorce. It seeks to control the behavior of the parties involved. The main use is to block access to bank accounts or other assets.
If you need to protect your assets either before you marry or as you end your marriage, contact family law attorney Lisa Sneiderman today for a free consultation.
Ohio Division of Assets: Did You Know?
Many of us treat pets as members of our family. In the eyes of the court, though, pets are property to be allocated to one party or the other. In other words, the court will not help couples negotiate this emotional situation. If the parties want to share time with the pet, they must come to an agreement outside of court.