Marital Property Vs. Separate Property in an NJ Divorce | What to Know

If you are getting divorced, you have a lot to consider. In many cases, if you cannot agree on the terms of your divorce, you will enter the litigation process, wherein your assets will be subject to equitable distribution. Please continue reading to learn more about the difference between marital property and separate property and how our New Jersey divorce attorneys can work to fight for your hard-earned assets. Here are some of the questions you may have:

What is separate property?

Essentially, in a divorce, separate property includes any property that a spouse acquired either before, or outside of marriage. Some examples of separate property include inheritances, gifts, and more. In most cases, separate property is exempt from the equitable distribution process.

What is marital property?

Marital property, on the other hand, consists of property that was acquired by both spouses during the course of their marriage, and marital property is, generally, subjected to equitable distribution. However, that being said, you should also note that in many cases, certain separate properties can even be considered marital property during the equitable distribution process. For example, if you purchased your home before you were ever married and you worked at your place of employment while your spouse stayed home and raised the kids, cleaned the house, and otherwise managed various household affairs/contributed to home improvements, there is a very good chance that your home may become marital property, and will, therefore, be subject to equitable distribution.

Can I do anything to protect my assets from a divorce?

Fortunately, there are several actions you can take to protect your assets from a divorce. If you are not yet married, you can draft a prenuptial agreement, which essentially outlines which spouse will get certain assets, should they ever get divorced in the future. On the other hand, if you are already married and have not yet drafted a prenuptial agreement, you may draft a postnuptial agreement, which serves the same essential purpose, though these documents are drafted exclusively after marriage. That being said, if you have not drafted any of the aforementioned agreements and your divorce is entering the litigation process, then you should strongly consider hiring a knowledgeable New Jersey divorce attorney who can fight for what is rightfully yours through every step of the litigation process. We are here to help–all you have to do is pick up the phone and give us a call.

CONTACT OUR EXPERIENCED NEW JERSEY FIRM

If you require strong legal representation for matters of divorce and family law in Rumson, Monmouth County, or anywhere in New Jersey, contact The Law Offices of Paone, Zaleski & Murphy to schedule a consultation with one of our experienced attorneys today.