You can accumulate quite a bit during a marriage. Houses, cars, bank accounts, business interests, investments, electronics, and even airline miles need to be divided.
A Colorado divorce attorney can work with you to divide your marital property amicably. If there’s a disagreement, then the lawyer may recommend mediation. If the dispute still can’t be settled, it might be necessary to go to court. However, this course of action is typically the last resort.
Colorado is an Equitable Distribution State
In Denver, CO, the law for divorce states that property should be divided equitably. However, equitable doesn’t necessarily mean equal. Instead, the interpretation of the word is “fair.”
As you can imagine, in many instances, the parties in a divorce tend to disagree about what’s fair. Longer marriages, in particular, tend to result in finances that have been interwoven. It can be a challenge to distinguish between what is marital property and what is separate property. An attorney can help you reach a fair settlement.
Marital Property vs. Separate Property
When you’re married, everything acquired during the marriage is considered marital property. This type of property is what gets divided. Separate property is classified as anything acquired before the marriage, as well as some assets acquired during, such as gifts and inheritances. However, there are exceptions to this rule.
Here’s a brief overview of the types of assets that get divided in divorce:
- Property – primary residence, vacation homes, timeshares, owned rentals, and other real estate
- Vehicles – cars, trucks, boats, motorcycles, recreational vehicles
- Bank accounts
- Investments – stocks, bonds, stock options, mutual funds, etc.
- Retirement plans – including IRAs, 401(k), pensions, and other plans
- Household items – furniture, electronics, tools, etc.
- Business interests that leveraged martial assets and effort
- Pay bonuses received during the marriage
When it comes time to divide the assets, not all of the assets are physically divided. You can’t cut a television in half, after all! Instead, the value of all of the non-divisible assets is summed up and then divided equitably between the spouses after paying off mutual debts and other considerations.