Separate Property vs. Marital Property
Separate Property: The most common type of separate property is property that was acquired or accumulated before the marriage. So if you have a 1966 Plymouth Fury that was paid for before the nuptials, then that beast will remain exclusively yours after the divorce. Separate property is also defined as inheritances, income from separate property, gifts to only one spouse, and personal injury compensation.
Combination: Sometimes, an asset can be considered part marital property and part separate property. For instance, if a party buys a motorcycle and pays for half of it before getting married, but then pays for the other half after his/her vows, then his/her spouse would only be entitled to a portion of the value accrued during the marriage.
Another important factor in determining whether an assets is marital property or separate property is figuring out how that asset was treated during the marriage. If separate property is co-mingled with marital property, then it loses its separate property status. Or if separate property increases in value as a result of a spouse's contribution, then that increase is usually designated as marital property. This means, if a party purchases a house before the marriage, and the house increased in value solely because of the market, it would likely still be designated as separate property in the divorce. However, if the parties used money earned during the marriage to pay the mortgage, or improvements were made during the marriage, then any appreciation would be considered marital property.
Dividing a Pension and/or other Retirement Benefits
Other Marital Assets
Division of assets does not have to be complicated. Hiring a divorce attorney that has experience in complex property division will go a long way in ensuring that you're rights are preserved and you get what you're entitled to. Call Pearson Law Firm for a free consultation with an experienced Utah divorce attorney that can help you navigate this complicated landscape. Call today, 801-888-0991.