When couples decide to divorce, they must begin to untangle the various aspects of their lives they built together. Among the things they must decide on how to split is the property, debts and assets they have accumulated. Like many other states, Minnesota is an equitable distribution state, which means the court will divide marital property between spouses fairly, but not necessarily 50/50.
Who gets the house?
Arguably the largest asset a married couple owns together is their home. The family house is not the only asset that will have to be accounted for in the divorce process, but it is certainly one of the biggest, and couples can simply split a house like they would other property. As such, some couples choose to sell the home and purchase or rent other residences in their names only, or they may elect to allow one spouse to keep the house while the other receives property that will equal any equity they have in the family home.
Couples may have accumulated many assets during their marriage, and if those assets were acquired using commingled funds, those assets become marital property subject to property division. However, spouses can valuate those assets and reach an agreement whereby one party receives certain assets and the other party received assets of equal value. Any property a spouse can prove was not obtained with commingled funds will usually not have to be divided in divorce.
Seeking legal counsel
Regardless of the amount and value of the assets a divorced couple must divide in the divorce process, each party will want to work with an experienced family law attorney from the start. A lawyer can help valuate the assets and debts and come up with a plan for equitable distribution. In all cases, an attorney will work to protect the rights and best interests of his or client throughout the process.