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Property Division Archives

How might Washington property division laws affect retirement?

Washington is one of nine states that handles property division issues somewhat differently than the other 43 states when it comes to divorce. These nine states are governed by community property division laws, meaning all community property gained during the marriage is owned equally by both spouses, subject to equal division in divorce. For some, this creates tremendous concern regarding their retirement plans.

Equitable division not an option in Washington

One of the most common sources of contention in the divorce process has to do with property distribution. Washington spouses often fight over who gets the house, the boat, the vacation time-share and any number of other big-ticket items, as well as minor assets that are more sentimental in value rather than monetary. Something every person considering divorce in this state should know is that the concept of equitable division does not apply here.

In a Washington divorce, you're bound by community property law

In addition to being known for its beautiful hemlocks and rhododendrons, Washington state has another claim to fame. It is one of only nine community property states in the entire nation. If anyone reading this is preparing to divorce, that might raise a few concerns.

Listing digital assets in a prenup may help if divorce occurs

When a married couple in Washington decides to get divorced, they may face several challenges as they navigate the process. For those with children, matters of custody, visitation and child support typically take precedence. Many people also run into complications where assets are concerned, and nowadays, digital property is often a central focus of discussion.

Baseball, hotdogs, applie pie and... marital assets?

That's not quite how the age old jingle ends, but the two phrases do have something in common. The old Chevrolet commercial lyrics speak of spring time and one of America's greatest pastimes: baseball. The latter, however, refers to marital breakup and property division. In case Washington readers are still wondering what marital assets and baseball have in common, it's timing.

How community property laws can affect a divorce

Washington is not an equitable distribution state when it comes to the division of marital assets in a divorce. In such states, assets are not always divided equally (as in, 50/50) in divorce, but the intent is that they be divided fairly. This state, however, is a community property state, which means income earned and property purchased with that income during marriage are considered jointly owned by both spouses. Any debt incurred by either spouse during the marriage is typically considered as being owed by both spouses as well.

Marital property: How prenuptial agreements help identify it

Chances are, there are couples currently married in Washington who will later divorce. Not all marriages end this way, of course, but statistics show that many do not last a lifetime. One of the most commonly addressed issues in divorce is marital property, specifically, who owns what and who gets what when after the divorce.

Financial prepration for divorce involves taking stock of assets

Depending on individual circumstances, a Washington couple who chooses to divorce may find the process fairly simple and without struggle, or quite complex and stressful. With regard to distribution of assets and other financial issues, many different types of problems can arise. Laws governing such matters often vary, and it is always advisable to seek clarification of the laws in one's own state so that one can be adequately prepared, financially and otherwise, for divorce.

Maintaining control of business assets in divorce

Many Washington marriages include a spouse who was already a business owner when the marriage took place. Marriages that end in divorce often face complications regarding business assets and/or voting control if/when assets are transferred to a non-business owner through divorce. Some say prenuptial agreements help prevent such complications and should be considered by any business owner who wishes to avoid the dilution of voting power.

Seeking clarification re property division issues in Washington

Attempting to negotiate a divorce settlement without benefit of an experienced legal background can make an already challenging situation extremely stressful. The governing laws and procedures regarding property division and other issues vary by state. Washington residents are encouraged to seek experienced legal counsel before engaging in any proceedings to negotiate such matters.

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