Going through a divorce can be a stressful, contentious experience even under the best of…
You’ve spent years building a life with your partner. As you move forward with a divorce, you may worry about how the assets accumulated over the years will be divided. The division of marital property is one of the top concerns for couples seeking divorce in Kansas City and the Leavenworth area. How can you ensure that you are getting your fair share? How do the courts divide assets in Kansas?
At Colgan Law Firm LLC, our knowledgeable Kansas divorce attorneys understand your concerns. We want to help you understand divorce and the division of assets in Kansas and how to protect yourself and the assets you’ve worked to accumulate.
How Are Assets Divided in a Kansas Divorce?
Generally, states use one of two methods for dividing assets in divorce. Some states follow community property guidelines, while others use the equitable distribution system. Kansas subscribes to the equitable distribution system when dividing assets between spouses. Under equitable distribution, the court evaluates a case and divides marital assets according to what is “fair.” Equitable distribution does not necessarily mean an equal 50-50 split. “Equitable” means dividing assets in a manner that is fair and just to both parties involved.
Additionally, only property considered to be marital property is subject to division under equitable distribution principles. Separate property or assets acquired by an individual before marriage are not subject to division during a divorce. Gifts and inheritances acquired during marriage may also be categorized as separate property in some circumstances.
Once all marital property has been accounted for:
- It can be divided between the spouses in kind
- It can be awarded entirely or in part to a single spouse, with the other spouse receiving fair payment for the difference
- It can be sold to third parties, with the proceeds being divided between the spouses
How Do Courts Decide Equitable Distribution?
Kansas courts review several factors to help them determine what constitutes a fair distribution of property, debts, and assets during a divorce. Some of the circumstances the court may examine can include:
- Each spouse’s income
- Each spouse’s earning capacity
- Each spouse’s future earning capacity
- Age and health of both spouses
- The length of the marriage
- Tax consequences to each party
- Family obligations
- Property owned by each spouse and how and when it was acquired
- Whether maintenance will be allowed
A decree must also untangle any other legal instruments involving the divorcing parties as spouses. As such, it must provide for changes in designated beneficiary for:
- Any annuity or insurance policy owned by the spouses, including group life insurance policies covering one of the spouses
- Any trust in which one of the spouses is grantor or has power of appointment over trust assets
- Any account on which both parties are owners or beneficiaries that is payable or transferable on death
Sit Down with an Experienced Kansas City Divorce Attorney Today
Are you worried about how your assets will be divided during your upcoming divorce? Discuss your concerns with an experienced Kansas City divorce attorney. At Colgan Law Firm LLC, we can review your situation, discuss your goals, and help you navigate this challenging time. We know divorce can be an emotional process, and we want to support you every step of the way.
Contact or call our Kansas City office today at 913-721-6067 to request a personalized legal consultation. We want to help you achieve the most favorable outcome possible for your case.