Top Hennepin County Property Division Issues

In Minnesota Divorce cases, property can be both marital and non-marital (for example: real estate).  If an asset is both marital and non-marital it is sometimes necessary to perform a neutral financial analysis (also referred to as forensic tracing) in order to determine the marital portion and the non-marital portion.  With real estate, the financial analysis is referred to as a Schmitz calculation. The Antone case addresses how to properly trace marital and non-marital interests in real estate when refinancing takes place during the marriage.

In many Divorce cases, the parties choose to use financial neutrals (such as a CPA, Actuary, Financial Planner or Real Estate Appraiser) to determine the value of an asset or to plan for the division of assets.  The use of financial neutrals has increased in recent years, as it tends to save time and expense for the parties, and it generally produces an excellent result (and it also minimizes/negates the need for each party to hire their own financial expert).

In Minnesota, there are two types of property associated with marriage.

“Marital Property” refers to almost all property that you and your spouse received or acquired during the marriage, even during the times you were separated, including real estate, cabins, rental property, household goods, automobiles, boats, jewelry, antiques and other items.

“Non-Marital Property” refers to: (1) anything that you or your spouse owned before the marriage; (2) a gift, bequest or inheritance made by a third party to one but not the other spouse; (3) anything that you or your spouse received in trade for your non-marital property; (4) any increase in the amount of non-marital property; (5) anything you or your spouse received after the valuation date set by the Court; (6) anything referred to as non-marital by a valid antenuptial agreement.

When a marriage is dissolved Minnesota courts will make a “fair and equitable” division of the marital property of the parties.  Equitable does not necessarily mean equal (although many Family Lawyers and even some Judges presume that equitable does mean equal).  Numerous factors are used to determine what is fair and equitable including the length of the marriage, the income of the parties, the liabilities of the parties, the education of the parties and several other factors (including the opportunity for the future acquisition of capital assets).

Despite what you may hear, you are never guaranteed to receive exactly 50% of the marital estate, although many Court use the 50% figure as a default when dividing the marital estate.

Please call 612-750-4843 to schedule an office consultation to review your Divorce case, or click on Contact Us.

Lake Harriet Law Office represents clients in Minneapolis, Edina, Eden Prairie, Bloomington, Golden Valley, Hopkins, Eden Prairie, Southwest Minneapolis, Linden Hills, New Hope, North Oaks, Hennepin County, Ramsey County, Richfield, St. Paul, St. Louis Park, Stillwater, Washington County, Wright County, Anoka County and Scott County.


Published On: May 9, 2013Categories: Family Law Updates

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