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How do courts determine what property is marital?

by | May 22, 2016 | Property And Asset Division

When people decide they no longer want to be married, they will likely file for divorce. Should this happen, during the divorce process, they will have a number of things to discuss, including property division. For some people, this specific divorce legal matter may be a simple one to resolve, but when couples are confused about what the courts may consider community or marital property, the dispute may take longer to resolve than planned.

The following things help the courts determine what property is considered marital:

  • Was the property purchased with commingled funds?
  • Was the property purchased prior to the marriage?
  • Were the wages earned during or prior to the marriage?
  • Were the gifts received for both spouses or specifically addressed to one?

Many spouses may be surprised to discover what property and assets are considered community property. It may not be ideal, but if possible, spouses may want to attempt to settle things amongst themselves and their attorneys if they want to avoid the court ruling that certain property is community or marital. Of course, if they feel as though they have a good chance of being awarded the property they want, they can go before a judge and let him or her decide.

Divorce is not easy, especially when people are upset by what the courts decide. Should couples not be able to agree on their own, they will have to let a judge decide, and this may lead to both people walking away with more or less than what they hoped they would. An attorney can assist spouses during divorce and answer any questions they may have about property division and other divorce legal matters.