Columbus Property Division Attorney
Parting with property is one of the most difficult yet inevitable parts of divorce. No one likes the idea of losing roughly half of their hard-earned assets. The good news, though, is that knowledge can make the property division process less stressful.
For more than four decades, Harry Lewis Co., LPA, has provided high-caliber legal assistance to individuals and families in Ohio. Attorney Gregg R. Lewis educates clients on property division and helps them know what to expect before the process begins. If you are preparing for divorce, Gregg and our team will work hard to protect as much of your property as possible.
Dividing Property In Ohio
Getting divorced in Ohio usually necessitates numerous other legal processes, such as those related to child custody and child support. But one of the biggest aspects of divorce itself is the division of assets and debts.
Property division is about more than just who gets the dishes and who gets the furniture. The most significant items to be divided may include:
- The marital residence (family home) and other real estate
- Retirement assets, including pensions, IRAs and 401(k) accounts
- Investment or stock portfolios
- Family vehicles that are jointly owned
- Marital debt
Your divorce may also include alimony, or spousal support, payments, which would typically factor into decisions about property division.
How Property Is Divided: Equitable Vs. Equal Distribution
Like most states, Ohio uses the “equitable distribution” model of property division. This means that courts are instructed to divide marital assets equitably, which doesn’t always mean equally. Courts can deviate from a 50-50 split to account for things like unequal earning potential, one spouse’s significant nonmonetary contributions to the family and more. The goal is to ensure that both spouses have the resources they need to live as comfortably and sustainably as possible.
Which Property Gets Divided In Divorce?
In Ohio, only marital property is subject to division. As a rule of thumb, marital property is typically property acquired by either spouse during the marriage. There are some notable exceptions, however, including an inheritance or other gifts given to only one spouse, as well as any property listed as separate in a prenuptial agreement.
Any assets acquired prior to marriage are considered separate property. It is important to note, however, that your spouse may have a partial stake in certain premarital assets, such as real estate or retirement accounts. For instance, you may have bought a house and opened a 401(k) account before getting married. While married, however, you continued to make mortgage payments and retirement contributions with marital funds. When getting divorced, then, your spouse would likely be entitled to a portion of these two assets because marital funds were used to pay them off or increase their value.
At first, the property division process can feel complex and overwhelming. The good news, however, is that the right attorney can greatly simplify these complicated ideas and guide you through the process from start to finish.
Need Help With Property Division? Contact Our Lawyer.
At Harry Lewis Co., LPA, our attorney, Gregg R. Lewis, has nearly 25 years of experience helping clients with family law issues, including property division. Gregg and our team are ready to solve your property division problems and provide free consultations. Book yours online or by calling 614-721-6175.