31 Dec 2017

How Maryland’s Marital Property Laws can affect you?

Marital property in Maryland is divided based on the “law of equitable distribution“. The law says that you can or can not get hold of 50 percent of the property you and your spouse received during your marriage. However, you may divide everything same by agreement, and the court will honor that. But if you can’t come to an agreement, and also you need the court to apportion your marital assets for you, a judge will do so in a way that seems fair to him, will or will not be appropriate to you.

Marital Property Vs Separate Property

Maryland makes a difference between separate and marital assets, just as other states do. The property you owned before you married isn’t subject to division in a divorce, provided you did not change the name into joint names. Any property you obtained by way of gift or inheritance is also yours alone, no matter when was given to you. Everything else you got from the date you married until the actual time of your divorce is marital assets, including income, this is true even if you or your spouse keep the same in your separate names.

Marital property Laws in Maryland

In general, states keep in mind marital assets to be all of the possessions and interest you and your husband/ wife received after your marriage. Unlike other states that comply with the laws of community property, Maryland has more flexibility on the subject of assets division. Regrettably, the increased flexibility also comes with more concern.

In case you and your husband/wife cannot agree on a fair divorce agreement out of court, a judge will make decisions for you regarding the division of assets. The judge might decide to divide all of your marital assets so that each you get about half. But, the court may instead determine that an unequal division is more in the spirit of fairness.

The court’s decision will hinge on factors including your earning potential versus his, which of you has custody of the kids, and how each of your shares to the marriage. The court can also look at the duration of your wedding and whether or not there are any special needs, such as lifelong medical care of assistance, required by either you or the kids.

Separate property

The court will not include some property in the marital asset which you own. As an instance, assets which you held before the marriage usually is not subject to division. Any items or inheritances you obtained also are separate from marital property and will stay yours after your divorce. Pension proceeds and property received through other different property, such as inheritance money, are also separate property. However, if it is too hard for the court to differentiate between separate and marital assets, your property should lose its independent status.

Because divorce laws are often complex and subject to change, it is essential that you seek legal assistance for your divorce. Take the crucial steps to save your interests and get the divorce settlement which you deserve.

How Property Is Divided

Courts divide marital assets so that one partner receives certain property totaling her percent of their overall cost and the other gets assets totaling his percentage. In many instances, Maryland courts have the power to order the transfer of title from one spouse to the another to attain this. However, exceptions exist. A judge can order the transfer of retirement funds, but he cannot order the direct transfer of real estate or stocks. Maryland law, allows judges to order a monetary award, same in value to that definite asset’s well worth, to attain equitable distribution of these properties.

The court will take into account the following factors to determine how much to award or transfer to each party:

  • How much each contributed to the well-being of the family
  • How much each party’s assets is well worth
  • The monetary status of each at the time the court makes the award
  • Why the individuals are searching for divorce and how they got there
  • How long the parties were married
  • The age of each individual
  • The physical and mental situation of each side
  • How and when the parties obtained specific marital assets, which includes how much effort each party expended to accumulate the marital assets
  • How much each party contributed to acquiring the real assets (for instance, land or a house) held by the parties as tenants by everything
  • Any award of alimony or other court awards for family use personal assets (including a car), or the family home
  • Another factor that the court looks at essential or appropriate to consider to arrive at a fair monetary award or transfer of assets.

Impact of Custody

Maryland judges reserve the right to award the marital home to the custodial parent for a period of up to 3 years post-divorce. The law doesn’t want kids replaced because of their parents’ divorce, forced to change schools and lose the homes they’ve grown up. When this happens, the award of the house can affect the division of other property. For instance, the custodial parent would possibly receive one less asset in exchange for keeping the house for this period.

If you want to know more about the marital property, please contact our Divorce lawyers or call 301-515-1190 to set up an initial consultation.

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