Pursuant to Florida statute, marital property is to be divided equitably. This means that the marital estate must be divided fairly, but not necessarily evenly. Such an approach invites extensive negotiation and litigation, which could put you at a disadvantage if you don’t properly advocate for your position.
But figuring out how to approach property division in your divorce can be difficult. After all, you might have emotional attachment to several pieces of personal property, and you want as much financial support as possible moving into the next chapter of your life. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to protect your interests and position yourself for a successful future.
You can’t go into your property division negotiations or litigation without a strategy and hope to come out successful. Instead, you need a clear game plan that gives you focus and direction. Here are some ways to achieve that in your case:
- Gain a clear picture of the marital estate: Sitting down at the negotiating table and requesting half of the marital assets doesn’t mean much if you don’t know what’s in the marital estate. So, in the early stages of your divorce, inventory all marital assets. Be thorough so that you capture everything that could come into play during your marriage dissolution. You should also pay particularly close attention to assets that may give rise to an argument that they are individually owned and thus outside the confines of the marital estate.
- Look for hidden assets: You shouldn’t fully trust your spouse during the divorce process, especially if you suspect that they’re hiding something from you. In some instances, spouses try to tuck away marital assets for their own private use once the divorce is finalized. You can’t let that happen if you want to secure what you deserve in your divorce. So, consider what kind of investigatory steps you need to take to identify these hidden assets and loop them back into the property division process.
- Create a post-divorce budget: By knowing what you’ll want and need in your post-divorce life, you’ll have a greater sense of direction in the property division process. Creating a post-divorce budget is a great way to figure out what you need out of your divorce. Be realistic when you create your budget so that you don’t cut yourself short.
- Figure out your spouse’s goals: Your spouse is also going to have wants and needs going into your divorce. If you can identify them ahead of time, you can use certain assets as leverage to get what you want. This will take some foresight, but you probably know your spouse well enough to figure out what motivates them.
- Know how to communicate effectively: If you hope to resolve your case through negotiations, then you need to be able to communicate with your spouse. Finding the best way to do so can be tricky, so look for ways to reduce conflict while still pushing your case forward. A lot of people find it helpful to reduce all communications to writing.
There’s a lot at stake in your divorce, including your financial stability. That’s why it’s crucial that you have a sound plan for addressing the property division process before you head into settlement negotiations and litigation. If you want to learn more about how to position yourself for success in these matters, then please continue to read through our website and find other resources that may be of benefit to you.