Fighting to Help Clients Receive Fair Property Settlements
One of the most contentious issues divorcing spouses cannot agree on is property division. If the spouses do not have a prenuptial agreement that dictates how property should be divided, the case may have to be decided by a judge in court.
Tennessee is an “equitable distribution” state. However, equitable distribution does not necessarily mean “equal distribution” of a couple’s assets.
Due to the legal complexities involved in splitting properties or asset division, it is always in your best interest to hire an experienced property division attorney who can explain your rights and protect your interests.
Contact the Garner Law Firm, PLLC, of Sumner County, and ask to schedule a consultation so that we may review your case.
What is Equitable Distribution in Tennessee?
Some individuals mistakenly believe that because Tennessee is an equitable division state, all property will be divided in a 50/50 split. However, courts are more interested in determining a settlement that is fair to both parties but not necessarily equal.
If a couple cannot divide their marital assets independently, they will have to have the court’s help. A judge will first determine what should be counted as marital property and what should be considered separate property. Tennessee courts consider marital property any property acquired during the marriage.
Separate property typically consists of property obtained through an inheritance or as a gift.
Some of the marital property assets that a court will examine include:
- Any debt acquired during the marriage.
- Real estate and other property holdings.
- Bank accounts
However, Social Security or retirement benefits are not considered marital property. Additionally, if a spouse has ownership in a family business, a great deal will depend on whether the business was started before or after the marriage.
If you have more questions regarding the factors the court uses to divide marital assets, contact the Garner Law Firm, PLLC, which has property division attorneys who will gladly answer your legal questions.
What Factors Does the Court Consider in Deciding Property Division Legal Issues?
The court will consider multiple factors when deciding property division. Some of the many factors a judge will examine include:
- The length of the marriage.
- The age of each spouse.
- Each spouse’s health and mental well-being.
- Each spouse’s vocational skills, training, and potential income-earning capacity.
- The financial needs and debts of each spouse.
- Any tangible or intangible contributions made by each spouse. Tangible or intangible contributions often include one party working to help put the other through school or sacrificing a career to stay home with children produced within the marriage.
- Each spouse’s potential future financial circumstances.
- The value of separate property owned by each spouse.
- Any economic misconduct on the part of either spouse.
- The value of each spouse’s estate at the time of marriage.
- Any government benefits that either spouse may be entitled to receive, such as Social Security.
Finally, the court will also closely examine any transmutation of separate property that has become marital property and the non-liquid character of all marital property, which is the ease or difficulty of selling assets.
What are the Benefits of Hiring a Property Division Lawyer?
Property division can be one of the most heated topics in a divorce action. Additionally, dividing assets acquired during the marriage can be complex. It requires the skill of a knowledgeable attorney and a forensic accountant who can sort out a couple’s finances.
For example, if the couple has children, the custodial parent may wish to remain in the home not to disrupt the child’s life and education. However, disputes often arise over who should retain ownership of the family home. Therefore, having an attorney on your side who can act as your legal advocate is essential.
Furthermore, in some cases, an individual may suspect that their soon-to-be ex-spouse has hidden assets or has transferred funds from a joint bank account and is not disclosing these actions to the court. A well-qualified attorney can review the couple’s finances to try and find discrepancies or discern where the missing money has been placed.
Finally, individuals are often under the misconception that if a property is titled in their name, they automatically retain ownership in a divorce. However, this is not necessarily the case, so it pays to have a property division lawyer who can guide you through the complex divorce process.
What Makes Your Property Division Lawyers the Best Choice to Handle My Case?
Garner Law Firm, PLLC, is passionately committed to helping individuals deal with the legal issues surrounding property division. Our legal team has extensive experience handling property division issues and obtaining favorable client results.
Our lawyers know the various factors the court evaluates when determining how marital property should be divided. We can provide high-quality legal advice regarding your financial situation and will fight to help you obtain a settlement that will give you the peace of mind you deserve.
We recognize that going through a divorce and trying to settle property division issues can be an overwhelming process. For this reason, we work diligently with clients to reach a resolution that adequately provides for their current and future needs.
If you are going through a divorce and cannot agree with your spouse about how your marital property should be divided, it is time to seek legal representation. We can review your case from a neutral third-party standpoint and help you understand what assets you can obtain in a settlement and where you may need to make concessions.