Division of Assets Attorney in Baltimore, Maryland
Property distribution can be one of the most acrimonious issues in a divorce. Both parties have worked hard to establish the life and possessions they enjoy. Spouses often disagree on what the other deserves and couples can quickly find themselves in court over the matter. When certain items come with emotional ties or a great value, it is little wonder why this topic is contested so frequently. If you are getting divorced and property distribution is being disputed, you should contact an attorney that can effectively advocate for you and protect your rights. Albers & Associates is equipped with a depth of experience and knowledge pertaining to divorce and family law matters. Contact Albers & Associates for a consultation.
Maryland is an equitable distribution state
Maryland is an equitable distribution state that allocates assets in a fair and just manner. Unfamiliar to most, this does not always mean an even split and can settle in a number of different percentages. Courts in Maryland will consider a range of factors regarding the marriage, including, but not limited to:
- Length of marriage
- Age of each party
- Health of each party
- Contributions to the family (monetary and non-monetary)
- Contribution of each party to real property
- How and when certain property was acquired
- Alimony award or provision granted regarding the use of personal property
- Standard of living established during the marriage
- Income and earning capacity of each person
- Value of the property
Many cases come down to establishing marital property, which is assets that belong to the couple, not the individual. A court can only divide marital property during a divorce. Simply put, marital property includes assets brought into the marriage or acquired during the marriage. Exempt property is a bit more complicated. Property is often considered exempt from the marital estate (and therefore yours alone) under the following conditions:
- It was acquired before the marriage
- Someone gave it to you as a gift
- You inherited it
- A prenuptial agreement excluded it from the marital estate
The allocation of marital property
Once marital property is established, the court will assign value to assets and debts. Furthering their focus on equitable distribution, they may consider factors, including:
- Contribution to the marital property
- Financial circumstances of the parties
- Tax consequences
Will marital fault impact the split?
Maryland rarely considers marital fault in the division of assets. For the most part, if you cite fault grounds, it will have little impact on marital issues heard in court. If your spouse cheated on you, most courts don’t believe that it is relevant to the case except for being the reason that you are allowed to proceed with the divorce. Economic fault is another story. If your spouse purposefully wasted or hid assets to impact the division of assets, the court may decide against that person or change the award in your favor. For this reason alone, it is important to consult with an effective legal team that leaves no stone unturned. Property that is rightly subject to division could be held under a relative’s name, hidden in a foreign country, or masquerading as a separate business. It is important to fight for what you are entitled. Our firm can help.
Contact an experienced Baltimore property distribution attorney
At Albers & Associates, we use our experience and legal acumen to uncover hidden assets on your behalf and fight for your legal rights, ensuring that you leave the marriage with everything to which you are entitled. We recognize the worry you may feel when facing an uncertain future and you can be comforted in knowing you are in good hands with an attentive and effective legal team by your side. For a consultation, contact Albers & Associates.