Divorce can be difficult, but with the right plan, things can be as painless as possible. One way to accomplish that is to be as knowledgeable as possible about marital property in Connecticut.
What Counts as Marital Property in Connecticut?
Division of marital property is when a judge divides up a couples matrimonial assets. These can include things like a house, money, and other property. Connecticut law requires an equitable division of property. Equitable does not necessarily mean an equal division.
What is “Equitable” Division of Property?
Equitable means what is fair. This determination is up to the judge. He or she will consider many different factors to come up with their decision. What the judge decides is fair may mean that one party gets more than the other party.
In Connecticut, a judge will also consider fault. If one person is more responsible for the dissolution of the marriage, he or she may receive less compensation.
How is Marital Property Divided in Connecticut?
The Superior Court judge will divide the couple’s property in a Connecticut divorce. There are two basic types of property that the judge will consider.
Real Property means buildings and land. These include:
- the marital homestead
- rental units
- vacation homes
- commercial land
- commercial buildings
Household goods, jewelry, stocks, furniture, savings accounts, checking accounts, retirements, complex assets, vehicles, boats, car loans, credit card debt, unsecured debt, unpaid bills, equity lines of credit, home mortgages, and many other things. Personal property is any other property that is not a building or land.
How do Judges in Connecticut Divide Property?
Appraisers, real estate agents, and other experts can be brought in to the proceedings to determine the value of a couple’s property. Some of the factors considered include:
- Length of the marriage
- Sources of income of each party
- Vocational skills and employability of each party
- Cause of divorce
- Who is getting custody of any children from the marriage
- A person’s age
F.A.Q. About Marital Property In Connecticut
There are many aspects of dividing marital property in Connecticut to discuss with an experienced attorney.
What is a temporary order?
A temporary order happens while a court case is pending. This order prevents either party from wasting or selling their assets. It also stabilizes the couple’s financial situation while the divorce is happening.
Is one spouse allowed to sell a mutual property?
No. In Connecticut, as soon as a party files legal divorce documents, neither spouse may sell, transfer, or hide property. If there is a court order or written consent of the other spouse, a transaction can take place. The order stays in effect until the divorce is final.
Does the court only divide marital property?
Not always. The court can also divide separate or non-marital property, which is property obtained before the marriage took place. However, under normal circumstances, the judge will award each party his separate property.
What happens to the marital homestead?
The marital homestead is the home the couple shares at the time of the divorce. If the couple has children, the court will consider their best interests when determining how to divide the home. Otherwise, it is like any other asset.
What about debts?
The judge also considers all the debts the couple has together and how to divide them. Sometimes, a judge will recognize who’s fault the debt is when assigning repayment.
What are complex assets?
In some marriages, there are complex assets to be divided. These are assets that go beyond normal things like houses and cars. Complex assets may include things like:
- Traditional, individual retirement accounts
- Roth IRA’s
- Teacher Retirement Funds
- Family Businesses
- State Employee Retirement Plans
- State Employee Pensions
- Employer 401K Plans
- Federal Employee Pensions
- Federal Employee Retirement Plans
- Defined Benefit Plans
Complex assets also include any real estate, which must be accurately valued. They also include any deferred compensation or executive pay.
What happens to expensive or inherited property?
In divorce proceedings in Connecticut, all property is considered equally. If the judge does decide to give you one party the property, the other spouse will have to be compensated equitably for its value. Sometimes a judge will allow property that was in someone’s name before the marriage to stay with that person.
Is Connecticut a 50/50 state?
The non-legalise answer to this question is, it depends. The best idea is to speak with an experienced attorney. Since Connecticut is an equitable state, there are many factors a judge will use in dividing the property. Dividing property 50/50 is not necessarily the rule.
If you are going through a divorce in Connecticut, contact us today for professional advice. Our experienced attorneys offer a free consultation to answer any questions you may have about marital property in Connecticut.