Equitable Distribution

Equitable Distribution in New Jersey is the process by which the Court (or the parties by agreement) divides both marital assets and debt upon divorce. The authority for the Court to do so is provided by N.J.S.A. 2A:34-23.1, which directs the Court to consider a host of factors in its analysis to ensure you have a fair share of marital property and distribution of marital debt.

These factors include:

• The number of years the marriage lasted
• The age and health of both spouses
• The income and assets that both spouses brought to the marriage
• The standard of living that was enjoyed by both parties during the marriage
• Any pre or postnuptial agreements signed by both parties concerning property division (if any)
• The economic circumstances of each spouse once the property division goes into effect
• The current income and earning capacity of each spouse (including access to training, education, etc.)
• The contributions each spouse made to one another’s education, training, or earning power
• The contributions each spouse made to the value of the marital estate (including homemaking)
• The tax consequences or liabilities each spouse would take on in the property division
• The current value of the marital property
• Any child custody considerations (such as the custodial parent needing the marital residence)
• The debts each spouse has incurred over the course of the marriage
• Any current or future needs to create a trust fund for either spouse or a child
• The extent to which either spouse deferred achieving their career goals
• Any other factors which the court finds relevant to equitable division

What Is Marital Property?

New Jersey is a community property state. This means that any property you or your spouse obtained during your marriage belongs equally to both of you.

Marital property may include:

• Retirement accounts
• Stocks and investments
• Bank accounts
• Real estate
• Businesses
• Cars
• Shared belongings such as furniture, electronics, and art
Some assets, however, are exempt from division. Anything you owned before entering into the marriage and anything you obtained as a gift or inheritance during the marriage is off-limits for division.
Divorce proceedings can be extremely overwhelming. We have helped many New Jersey residents navigate these challenging processes and have seen how complex the many decisions and disputes involved can impact a family in a divorce.
Before your divorce can be finalized, you must divide all marital property and marital debt. This process can be made far easier with the assistance of a New Jersey attorney at The Law Offices of Cindy Ramjattan-Paul, P.C.

Give us a call at (973) 542-0200 or mail us @ office@cindypaulesq.com to schedule a consultation and discover if a legal separation is the right option for you.