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Deciding Who Gets What In Divorce

Much of the divorce process is about money and property. Marital assets and marital debts must be identified, valued and divided according to Pennsylvania’s principle of equitable distribution. Recognizing whether an asset or debt is marital or nonmarital is a critical first step in resolving this issue.

Once the marital estate is defined, assets must be valued and then fairly divided. The valuation process can be difficult, especially with certain types of pensions and retirement benefits. The method of division is also critical, involving numerous economic factors that can impact the division between the parties. Finally, tax considerations need to be applied so that the overall division does not carry a hidden financial time bomb.

Thorough Analysis Of Marital Assets

At Wolfe, Rice & Quinn, LLC, we are adept at these complex analytical tasks and skilled in obtaining results that are most advantageous to you. Your future financial well-being is at stake and you only get one chance to do it right.

We have the experience and the analytical skill to help in advocating for a division of assets and debts, including:

  • Real estate, including home and business
  • Businesses and partnerships
  • Pensions, retirement funds, stock options, IRAs and 401(k)s
  • Personal property
  • Joint credit card debts
  • Home mortgages

Our lawyers are skilled in ensuring that all financial issues are on the table. Our experience helps to arrive at a division that includes dealing with possible future consequences if the other side does not live up to their obligations.

Frequently Asked Questions About Property Division In Pennsylvania

The division of property during a divorce can be one of the most contentious issues couples face. When divorce leaves you with questions, you deserve to have the answers you need to move forward with your divorce proceedings.

Is Pennsylvania an equitable distribution or community property state for dividing marital property in divorce?

In Pennsylvania, courts do not divide marital property equally. Instead, the court looks at many factors to decide on a fair or “equitable” division of a couple’s property.

What assets are not marital property?

Marital property includes most of the money, debts and property acquired during a marriage. Separate property, on the other hand, includes:

  • Property acquired before the marriage
  • Inheritances and gifts received by one spouse from a third party during the marriage
  • Property excluded by a valid prenuptial or postnuptial agreement
  • Certain veterans’ benefits
  • Property acquired after final separation, but before the divorce is finalized, if not acquired in contemplation of the marriage

This separate property may also become marital property in some situations. For example, if your spouse’s effort or an investment made with your shared funds increases the value of your property, the court may divide the amount of the increase.

How are large assets assessed for value in a divorce?

Determining the worth of high-dollar items like homes, businesses or complex investments can be challenging. In these situations, couples need to bring in experts like appraisers, accountants or business valuators. They look at several details about the property – including financial records and market factors – to say what these assets are worth. This valuation also gives couples a clearer understanding of each spouse’s share of these assets.

Because dividing these assets can be challenging, you should seek legal and financial guidance during property division. This advice can help you protect your rights and ensure that the division of assets is handled appropriately.

Call Our Office To Discuss Your Case

You will always receive competent and prompt representation from the Gettysburg property division attorneys at Wolfe, Rice & Quinn, LLC. To discuss your unique asset division situation, contact us by email or call us at 717-253-9182.