Types of Property in Monmouth County

Marriage entails two people coming together to make a living as a couple. During the course of a marriage, it is very common for a couple to collect property together, such as houses, cars, furniture. A lengthy marriage can also mean that a couple intertwines their finances and helps the other by supporting them through school, opening up a joint checking account, or even contributing to the retirement of the other.

However, many couples are left wondering what happens to all of these things if the couple decides to part ways and get divorced. The process of dividing all of the property that a couple has collected over the years can be confusing, intimidating, and even frustrating. If you are contemplating divorce, have filed for divorce, or are waiting for a divorce, it is important to consider all of your options, and understand how the different types of property in Monmouth County may change your divorce. Contact a skilled property division lawyer to discuss your case.

New Jersey Property Division Laws

New Jersey is what is known as an equitable distribution state, which means that when a couple divorces, their marital property is divided in a way that is fair and just. In other states that are considered community property states, assets will be divided more equally in the event the couple decides to part ways. However, before a court will start dividing assets it is important to understand the different types of property a court will consider in Monmouth County.

Types of Property

Under New Jersey family law statutes and cases, property can be divided into two large categories, marital property or separate property. Marital property is considered all property that is acquired during the course of a marriage is considered to be marital property. This means that when a couple is married, anything one spouse acquires, the other spouse will have an ownership stake in.

Role of Equitable Distribution

In New Jersey, only marital property is subject to equitable distribution. Common examples of marital property in Monmouth County include:

  • Real Estate
  • Automobiles
  • Stocks
  • Bonds
  • Savings accounts
  • Individual retirement accounts (IRA’s)
  • 401K's
  • Pensions
  • The cash value of life insurance policies
  • Furniture, fixtures, and appliances in all houses
  • A business owned by one or both spouses

Property that a person acquires before the marriage is considered to be separate or nonmarital property. Non-marital property can be broken down into three smaller categories:

  • Non-marital property where only the value of the property after the date of marriage can be considered
  • Cohabitation property is shared by a couple who never married, and in the interest of fairness and equity, can be applied in a property division
  • Property that one or both parties acquired and that both made contributions to before the marriage
What are Inherited Property and Gifts?

Inherited property generally is in real estate, or money that a person inherits through a will or through New Jersey inheritance laws. Gifts as a form of property are often a highly contested part of divorces. A gift from one spouse to another is considered to be marital property.

However, a gift from a third person is generally not considered to be marital property. For example, if a spouse’s parent gives a gift to their child, it is generally not considered to be marital property.

In any divorce proceeding, classifying a piece of property as either marital or separate property can have a significant impact on a person. If property such as a house, car, boat, or even bank account is considered to be marital property, it will then be subject to equitable distribution.

Consulting a Lawyer

Determining what property is marital property and should be divided in a divorce can be a long and difficult process, and the decisions you make in a divorce proceeding can affect your home, your business, and your finances.Therefore, it is critical to make careful and informed decisions.

Contact a Monmouth County divorce lawyer to discuss how we can guide you through this difficult process, gain a thorough understanding of the types of property in Monmouth County, and help ensure that your rights and property are protected.