Property Settlement

Closeup image of a credit card with wedding rings on the top of it depicting marital debt.

Is Debt Incurred in the Name of One Spouse Considered Marital Debt?

January 11, 2016

Under North Carolina law, “marital” debt is considered debt that is incurred after the date of marriage and before the date of separation by one or both spouses for the joint benefit of the parties. The fact that debt is established in the name of one spouse individually does not determine whether the debt is a marital debt or a separate debt for purposes of equitable distribution of the marital and divisible property and debts.…

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Can My Spouse and I Use the Same Divorce Attorney?

November 17, 2015

When spouses separate, there may be many legal issues that arise in connection with their marital separation, including child custody, child support, spousal support, and equitable distribution of marital property and debts, as well as the actual “absolute” divorce. Divorcing spouses often look for ways to reduce their legal expenses and may wonder if they can use one attorney to prepare their separation agreement and/or obtain their divorce. In North Carolina, the answer is “no.”…

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Equal or Unequal? Should One Spouse Receive More Than 50% of the Marital Estate?

October 11, 2015

In actions for equitable distribution, North Carolina law requires that the court distribute the net marital and divisible property equitably between the parties. Equitably, however, does not mean equally. There is a presumption that an equal division of marital and divisible property is equitable, or fair. However, depending on the circumstances of the case, there are numerous factors that the court can consider in distributing the marital estate unequally between the parties. Some of those…

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How Is Property Valued for Purposes of Equitable Distribution?

September 13, 2015

In North Carolina, the court ordered or agreed-upon division of assets and debts that occurs when spouses separate is called equitable distribution. For purposes of equitable distribution, the parties’ marital assets and debts are valued as of the date of separation. The value of property is determined based upon the fair market value. Fair market value is considered an estimate of the amount in which a willing buyer would pay, and a willing seller would…

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What Is “Divisible Property?”

August 10, 2015

In North Carolina, the assets and debts that couples accumulate from date of marriage to date of separation are presumed to be marital property that is subject to equitable distribution. For purposes of valuing the assets and debts, the marital estate is essentially “frozen” as of the date of separation. In order to take into account such things as passive changes in value of marital property that occurs between date of separation and date of…

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