When people divorce, the division of property and assets is usually a key concern. Both parties want to ensure they receive their fair share after separating and may have savings accounts that they believe need to be their sole property.
States have different laws that may significantly impact property division. Understanding the laws within Florida is imperative to know how to prepare for the separation of assets.
Distributing in Florida
Florida is one of 34 equitable distribution states. The court does not need to equally split property division for all assets gained during marriage, but a couple’s assets are marital property.
Agreeing on division
For equitable distribution, a court decides on the division of marital property, which may involve evaluating the financial earnings, separate property value, health, alimony and prenuptial agreement of the couple. In situations where the couple agrees on the division of some assets but not all, the court may assist in dividing the remaining holdings.
If both parties agree on how they wish to divide property and assets during a divorce, the rules of equitable distribution no longer apply. The ex-spouses may agree to split their ownership as they see fit. The parties may make a written agreement to determine if certain items need to be separate property.
Handling bank accounts
Some couples share joint bank accounts while others hold separate accounts. However, the court may classify both shared and separate bank accounts as marital property. Whether both or one party’s name is on an account is immaterial in these situations.
For example, if one spouse holds a bank account that predates her marriage and she has not deposited or transferred money since the marriage, the value may be her sole property. However, if she has added money to an account post-marriage and the other spouse’s income may have been a contributing factor, the court may decide to split that money evenly.