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Proof: An important element in determining separate property

You and your spouse make the difficult decision to divorce. You do not have children, but you have acquired substantial property during your marriage, and you worry about how a Minnesota judge will oversee the property split when your divorce finalizes.

Minnesota operates under the laws of equitable distribution. These laws help determine whether property constitutes marital or separate, and how the marital property will face distribution. Rather than splitting property directly in half, the court will determine a fair distribution of your assets.

Determining separate property and the need for documentation

Separate property indicates property owned solely by you. Perhaps, before you married, you acquired a collectible car. Your spouse never signed ownership, nor did he or she utilize the vehicle. Your collectible car will hold separate property value in Minnesota divorce court, and your spouse will not receive the vehicle when your divorce finalizes.

Other separate property may include:

  • Inheritances
  • Gifts
  • Property only owned by you
  • Income received from property only owned by you

A court will subject marital property to division based on a variety of factors of your marriage including your marriage length, how you contributed, or even your health. This marital property could include your home, your bank assets or your retirement accounts, as long as your acquired the property while you stayed married.

The most important aspect of keeping your separate property after divorce lies in proof. To show to the court that you acquired the property before you married your spouse or after your initial separation, you want to keep track of all deeds or possession documentation, or a judge could determine that your separate property is actually marital.

Before dividing your assets during the divorce process, you want to ensure you have accurate representation. Minnesota family law attorneys have years of experience in equitable distribution cases, and you want to obtain maximum assets from your marriage while maintaining your rightfully-owned property.

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