Dividing assets can be one of the most painful, contentious steps in your divorce. Despite this, many people make the mistake of oversimplifying this process, especially when the assets involved are modest.
Unfortunately, disputes can and do arise during the distribution of assets, regardless of the size of your marital estate. Below, we examine a few of these common disputes in an effort to help you prepare yourself for the potential obstacles ahead.
Arguments over property categorization
In accordance with North Carolina property division laws, property categorized as marital will be eligible for equitable distribution upon divorce. Separate property, on the other hand, will generally be shielded from division.
Categorization is not always simple to determine, though. Assets might start as separate and become marital; prenuptial agreements might protect one separate asset as such, even though it would otherwise be marital. Because of this, ownership of certain property or debts can be up for debate.
Asset valuation disagreements
In order to calculate an equitable division of property, the property must be valued properly first. If you have complex assets, like a business or non-monetary benefits, then different parties can come up with different values. When two sides differ with regard to valuation, it can be all but impossible to agree on how to divide the estate.
Allegations of hiding assets
Accurate or not, accusations that a person is hiding assets can upend any divorce settlement talks. Parties can become even more distrustful and less willing to work together to work out a settlement, and a trial can be unavoidable.
Avoiding and dealing with these disputes
Awareness that these types of disputes can and do arise may help you avoid them if you are in the process of divorce. You may be more diligent in the collection of your financial data, and you can discuss potential hiccups with your attorney before they ever turn into a fight.
If you can’t avoid these or other property division disputes, then you will still need to deal with them and resolve them. With legal guidance, an understanding of what the challenges are, and a focus on finding a solution, you can address these problems and work to handle them in an effective manner.