In a marriage, it is very common for a couple to incur liabilities and debts for things such as mortgages, credit cards, student loans, car loans, and even tax liabilities. However, it is very easy for a couple to forget about these debts and liabilities when they are discussing how to divide their property following a divorce.
The division of liabilities in Monmouth County is a very fact-sensitive and important part of a divorce proceeding, and it is important that you have an experienced and knowledgeable Monmouth County divorce lawyer at your side to ensure that you are not left with unnecessary debt and burdensome liabilities because of your spouse.How does the Court Divide Liabilities?
When a court is attempting to make a division of liabilities in Monmouth County, their first determination will be whether the debt is a marital debt or a non-marital debt.
Regardless of the way that a court looks at the division, courts across the state have consistently held that debts and liabilities that are incurred during the course of a marriage should be considered marital property and therefore be divided.
When the court is making an allocation of debts and liabilities, the court may divide the assets in a way that it deems fair even if the other spouse did not incur the debt themselves.
An example of this would be if the one spouse makes a large purchase for the household such as a car or a boat and the other spouse was aware of the that the other spouse was incurring this debt, the court may find that both parties are liable for this type of debt.
However, how the court divides debts and liabilities depends on the particular circumstances of the case. If a person is concerned with how a Monmouth County court may divide liabilities, working with a Monmouth County divorce lawyer is an excellent way of ensuring that the court considers the unique circumstances of their marriage and of their cases.Equitable Division of Liabilities
When a court is trying to divide liabilities at the end of a divorce, there are thousands of different factors they may take into account. However, N.J.S.A.2A:34-23.1 specifically identifies at least 15 factors a court will consider when dividing assets and liabilities.
The most important factor relating to division of liabilities is N.J.S.A.2A:34-23.1(m), which includes the debts and liabilities of the parties
When the court is determining how to divide these debts and liabilities they will identify the specific debt or liability to be divided, determine the value of the debt or liability, and equitably distribute the debt or liability.
Determining whether a debt should be subject to equitable distribution is an important part of a divorce process and one that can have a tremendous impact on a person’s future.
If the Monmouth court determines that a particular debt, such as a car loan, is not marital property they may not divide the debt between the spouses, which means that one spouse will be responsible for the entire debt and liability.Consulting a Divorce Lawyer
If you are beginning the process of divorce, or are in a long-term separation and have questions about the division of liabilities in Monmouth County, it is important that you contact a member of our Monmouth County family law practice to discuss your case.