If you and your spouse are navigating a divorce, property division is a matter you will need to consider. If you cannot agree on the division of marital property on your own, a judge may make the decision for you.
Having a qualified property division lawyer on your side is beneficial as you work through this step in the divorce process. Contact our Jimeno and Gray team today in Glen Burnie, Maryland, at 443-249-8583 for assistance.
Marital Property vs. Separate Property
To understand property division in Maryland, you must know the difference between marital and separate property. Only marital property is subject to division in a divorce case.
Marital property is any personal property that either spouse acquired or added value to during the marriage. This property can include:
- Real estate
- Bank accounts
Even if one spouse technically bought the property for themselves, if they purchased it during the marriage, it would be considered marital property.
In contrast, separate property includes:
- Property acquired before the marriage
- Gifts, from third persons, or inheritances either spouse received during the marriage
- Property excluded through a prenuptial or postmarital agreement
Separate property is usually not subject to property division in a divorce.
Maryland uses an equitable distribution process when dividing marital assets. This means that a divorce judge does not need to divide a divorcing couple’s property evenly down the middle. Instead, the judge can use their best judgment to determine a fair distribution, even if it is not completely equal.
Only marital property is subject to equitable distribution in Maryland. Separate property will remain in the possession of its sole owner.
A judge will review all of the following factors to determine equitable distribution in a divorce:
- The length of the marriage
- Each party’s age
- Each party’s income and earning ability
- Each party’s economic contributions throughout the marriage
- Any histories of family violence
- Any histories of substance abuse
How Can a Property Division Attorney Help?
If you and your spouse can agree on the division of all of your marital assets and property, you may not need the assistance of an attorney. But most divorcing couples in Glen Burnie have trouble reaching agreements on their own.
When you work with a property division attorney, they can represent you in front of a judge as you make your case about property division. For instance, you may feel that you deserve the shared minivan because you will have all of the children during the week, but your partner disagrees. Your attorney can present this argument clearly and convincingly in court.
Your attorney can also assist you throughout the divorce by:
- Providing legal advice and counsel
- Helping you fill out the appropriate documentation
- Communicating with your spouse on your behalf
- Guiding you through child custody, child support, and spousal support, if applicable
Contact Our Qualified Property Division Lawyer Today
At Jimeno and Gray, we’re committed to helping divorcing couples throughout Glen Burnie, MD, navigate property division and all related legal matters. Contact us today at 443-249-8583 to schedule a consultation.