Protecting Your Assets During a Divorce
If you have made the painful decision to divorce, you don’t also want to add financial worries to your emotional pain. If you have planned adequately, you can minimize any hit to your assets in a Florida divorce.
Crystal Collins Spencer has experience planning in advance of your marriage dissolution to protect your assets during the divorce, and she will aggressively advocate for the assets you deserve to receive.
Challenges to Your Assets During a Divorce
Because Florida is an equitable distribution state, the court does not have to divide marital assets equally but rather depending on the degree of contribution to the marriage.
In a Florida divorce, the court will consider the property that has accrued during the marriage. That would include bonuses, salary, and the sale of a property, as long as it is on both names. The judge will determine what is fair to both parties based on their contribution to the marriage each has made.
For example, if one spouse maintained the household and cared for the children, that may carry the weight of a financial contribution in a long-term marriage.
The exception would be any inheritance that one of the partners may receive during the marriage, providing it is in the name of one spouse.
If one spouse inherits money from her late father’s estate, for example, it is designated to go just to her as long as she is named, and the money is not deposited in a joint bank account.
If the money does go into an account owned by both spouses, it could be argued it is a marital asset subject to equitable distribution laws. Another exception might be if one spouse worked to maintain or enhance the asset, such as a house that the husband renovated. In that case, the spouse not named may have some claim to a portion of that asset.
Another challenge that occasionally arises is if one spouse decides to hide assets from the other. Our firm is very adept at uncovering any assets to bring to the negotiating table as part of full disclosure.
All of this can be outlined in a prenuptial agreement before the marriage to specify how assets will be divided in the case of a divorce. It can also be accomplished in the form of a will, a deed, or some other evidence to prove the intention of the deceased family member, in the case of inheritance.
The prenuptial agreement is one that is agreed to by both sides who retain separate legal representation. That way one partner cannot bully the other into submission against his or her will. The agreement is basically a negotiation that takes care of any eventualities in case of divorce.
Engaged couples generally do not want to think about the possibility of a divorce, but legal counsel can advise the individuals on working out any differences ahead of a divorce filing when feelings may not be so charitable.
In a divorce, it is always best for the couple to try to work out their differences themselves before letting a judge decide. If the question of how to distribute the marital assets does and up in front of a court, it will be more costly for the divorcing spouses to resolve it, and it is possible that both sides will be disappointed.
Your Experienced Family Law Firm
Crystal Collins Spencer is a skilled trial lawyer who has also served as Assistant State Attorney for the Office of State Attorney in the First Judicial Circuit Court of Florida. She has handled some of the most complex divorce and family law cases, and she is well-equipped to deal effectively with any complications that may arise in your case.
You need strong representation during this time from someone who will stand by your side and work hard to protect your assets during a difficult divorce. Reach out to our Pensacola office at 850-795-4910 or message us online to begin the conversation.
Our offices are continually sanitized so you can safely meet with us in Pensacola, Sandestin, or Fort Walton Beach. We can also provide a remote consultation if you prefer a contactless interaction while the global pandemic is still ongoing.