- June 28, 2022
- Kelvin Birk
- Family Law
The start of any divorce process can be confusing and overwhelming for those involved. As you and your spouse begin to separate your lives, you will also be splitting your personal items and finances. Because of this, it’s necessary to list your assets and debts properly; this will help you avoid more serious issues down the road.
When you take the time to get your financial information organized, you will be in a better position to negotiate a fair settlement. If you fail to do this, then you are risking the potential of additional legal action once your divorce is final. You may even be held in contempt of court.
One of the first things you must figure out is how to list assets for divorce.
How to List Assets for Divorce
Do you know what is considered personal assets in divorce? This includes all your properties, accounts, investments, possessions, businesses, and anything else that has a cash value.
You can save yourself the time and stress of documenting your assets by beginning a list before the process of dividing property even starts. You can create a written list or make one online. You can even use a divorce asset worksheet, which you can easily find online and print for your personal use.
When creating your list, you want to have a category for every type of asset. Make sure you include details about every type of asset so there won’t be any questions from your spouse or their attorney during the divorce proceedings. When you organize your assets like this, it will show transparency and help you avoid accusations of hiding assets.
The list of assets you create should include:
- Credit cards, personal bank accounts, retirement accounts, and shared accounts
- High-value personal belongings like antiques, jewelry, art, and more
- Investments like intellectual property, stocks, insurance accounts, bonds, annuities, retirement funds, etc.
- Motorcycles, cars, boats, trailers, and other types of vehicles
- Real estate properties, including land, income properties, and vacation homes.
Make sure that you list and describe all assets that you had before your marriage, along with assets that you inherited while you were married, assets that were gifted to you during the marriage, and assets that could possibly be protected from division with your spouse.
If you are a business owner, it is a good idea to make sure you document the business accounts and properties. If you don’t know the estimated value of your business, you should consult with an accountant.
What Are Considered Personal Assets in a Divorce?
Most people want to know what is considered personal assets in a divorce. If this is true for you, you can find the answer here.
Separate or personal assets are those that you claimed prior to getting married. They could be something someone gifted to you during your marriage. Some examples of personal assets include:
- Some personal injury awards
- Inherited items
- Things you purchased before your wedding
- Family heirlooms.
It’s a good idea to hire a divorce lawyer who understands how property division works. It isn’t uncommon for emotions to cloud your judgment. You may also want to get the divorce done as quickly as possible, which may result in rash or poor decisions. Having an attorney will help to guide you through this process.
If something is a personal asset, then it is going to be something that doesn’t get divided. If you are wondering, what assets cannot be touched in divorce, this is the answer.
Unfortunately, things can get confusing in some situations. Because of this, one of the best things you can do is to hire an attorney to help.
What Is Considered Marital Property?
When it comes to a divorce, marital property includes things like:
- Retirement contributions
Anything you purchase during the marriage is marital property. Because of this, they will be put through the division process when you divorce. In most cases, marital property will be divided equally, which means 50/50 or equitably.
Listing Your Debts
Once you have listed all your assets – separate and community – it’s time to create a list of your debts. The debts that you have with your spouse are considered during the division process.
The debts that you acquired both before and after you got married should be disclosed during the divorce proceedings.
The list of debts that you create needs to include the following things:
- Student loans
- Home loans and equity loans
- Credit card bills
- Personal loans
- Medical bills
- Auto loans.
Listing Your Assets and Debts for Divorce
Taking inventory of all your assets and debts for a divorce isn’t a fun process; however, it is a necessary one. Not only is it essential that you disclose this information to your spouse and their attorney, but it is necessary to ensure you get your fair share of assets.
Unfortunately, asset division during a divorce can get complex and, at times, heated. It’s often hard for the divorcing couple to look at things from a third-party perspective. As a result, emotions are often involved. One of the best ways to avoid this is by getting an attorney’s input and advice along the way. Doing so is going to help you make smart decisions and ensure your rights are protected.
Contact Our Legal Team for Help with Divorce and Asset Division
Are you going through a divorce? Do you need help with the asset division process? Are you unsure what to include on your asset list? If so, our legal team at Birk Law Firm is available to help. You can get in touch with us to schedule a free consultation by calling (573) 332-8585.
With our help, you can feel confident that we will look out for your best interests and ensure that the asset and debt division process is fair. Divorce can be difficult, but we are here to help. The first step is to get in touch and set up an initial appointment.
Attorney Kelvin Birk
Kelvin Birk is a lawyer as well as a certified public accountant, with more than 30 years of experience in accounting and tax and business consulting, and more than 20 years of experience in numerous legal matters. This combined expertise allows our law firm to provide a level of service above that of other firms. Whatever your legal situation, your attorney at Birk Law Firm can counsel you as to the tax implications. We have experience in providing myriad legal representation services to residents of southeast Missouri and other areas. [ Attorney Bio ]