What Happens to a House in a Divorce?

When a couple decides it is time to get a divorce, they very often have several questions regarding the next step forward. Emotionally, divorce is a significant thing to process. Your way of life is about to change, and it is only natural to feel concerned about what the future holds. However, you are most likely also very concerned about what will happen with your hard-earned assets, especially if you and your former spouse cannot agree on the terms of your divorce.

Contested divorces go through the litigation process, meaning both you and your former spouse’s assets may be up for grabs. This can be extremely stressful, especially when it comes down to your larger assets, like your home. Generally, both parties feel they are entitled to the home, though in some cases, this can be very hard to determine from a legal standpoint. If you find yourself in this situation, here are some of the questions you may have:

What is equitable distribution?

Essentially, when your divorce is in litigation, the court will decide its terms. The court will reach their decision through what is known as equitable distribution. The courts will analyze both you and your former spouse’s financial and overall situation to determine who gets what based on their idea of a fair and just division of assets. However, rather obviously, both former spouses usually do not agree on the court’s decision, so it is important you hire a knowledgeable attorney who will aggressively fight for your rightful assets.

What is marital property?

There are two types of property: marital property and separate property. Assets acquired during your marriage are considered marital property. Assets acquired before or outside of your marriage, such as gifts or inheritances, are known as separate property. Please do not wait. If you believe your assets are at stake, contact one of our attorneys as soon as you can.

How will the court decide who gets to keep the house?

There are several different factors and scenarios that the courts will consider before divvying you and your spouse’s assets. Some of these factors are as follows:

  • Your age and health
  • The length of your marriage
  • The value of your property
  • Your income
  • Your debts and liabilities
  • Tax consequences
  • Child custody agreements
  • Whether both spouses can be financially independent

Contact our experienced Massachusetts firm

If you require compassionate and knowledgeable legal guidance for a matter of divorce, family or estate law, please do not hesitate to contact the experienced attorneys at the Law Offices of Cynthia L. Hanley today. We recognize the impact a divorce can have on the lives of you or your children, which is why our firm proudly serves clients in Mansfield, Massachusetts and throughout Bristol County.