Lake Harriet Law Office is a Gold Sponsor at Divorce Camp 2022, which takes place September 29 – October 2, 2022, at Madden’s on Gull Lake. This year’s theme is negotiation. A fitting topic as we leave the Covid pandemic behind. The American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers Minnesota Chapter organizes and plans Divorce Camp each year.
One of the most common questions for someone contemplating divorce is how will property and assets be divided? Minnesota uses the concept of equitable division.
How will our property be split up?
During a divorce property is equitably divided. While it’s easy to split the money in a bank account in half, dividing assets becomes more complicated with items such as houses, gifts, and debts.
- Houses: parties in a divorce must decide whether one person is going to keep the house or if both parties want to keep the house. If the parties sell the house, they can then split up the house sale proceeds. If one party wants to keep the house they typically “buy out” the other’s portion. Getting a home appraisal is very helpful when one party plans to keep the house, especially during a robust housing market.
- Bank and Brokerage Accounts: These accounts must be identified and placed on the balance sheet.
- Stocks and Bonds: Same concept as bank and brokerage accounts.
- Debts: Just as assets must be divided, debts must also be divided. A court may divide some debts in half between the parties, but may apportion some debts to the person benefiting from the debt. For example, if one party is keeping the family car, the court may assign the loan to the person keeping the car.
- Qualified Plans and Pensions: 401k, 403b, IRA and other qualified plans are identified and valued. Pensions are valued differently, and in some cases an actuary can assist with the present value calculation.
- Balance Sheet Preparation: Each divorce case requires a well drafted balance sheet.
- Gifts & Inheritances: If one party wants to claim a gift or inheritance should not be divided at divorce, they must prove the asset is nonmarital (should not be divided by the parties in divorce). If an individual used the gift or inheritance during the marriage, for example put the money towards a mortgage during the marriage, the individual may have to prove through “tracing” what belongs to them.
Hire a Law Firm with Financial Acumen
Make sure to work with an attorney to properly divide up your assets equitably during your divorce.
At Lake Harriet Law Office, we provide strong legal representation for our clients who are going through divorce, and we use a data-focused approach to address the division of assets and debts. If you are concerned about divorce and the related financial issues, please contact us to schedule a consultation at 612-750-4843.
Randall A. Smith – Managing Attorney 612-750-4843
Becca Favre – Student Attorney 612-223-8925
Madeline Woodward – Student Attorney 612-223-8925
Julia Kasbohm – Student Attorney 612-223-8925
Melissa Rezzag – Student Attorney 612-223-8925