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Separate Property in Marriage and Divorce

According to US Politics, more and more spouses are starting to fear that marriage will change the nature of their separate property. Yet New York law states that separate property will remain that way during a marriage unless the spouse specifically takes action to change it into marital property.

The separate property laws in New York can get detailed and complicated, but a knowledgeable Long Island divorce attorney can help you to sort through them. In New York, the state upholds the equitable distribution law when it comes to shared property. This concept states that marriage is an economic partnership and that when a couple splits they need to divide assets much like two business partners would.

The New York Court of Appeals has held to the fact that there should be a winding up of parties’ economic affairs and a severance of their economic ties. This means that when a couple splits, they shouldn’t continue to share bank accounts or property. This only applies to marital assets. That means that if you have always owned a piece of property on your own, that will not be considered a marital asset. The court must declare what your marital assets are before they divide them up. As well, they don’t have to divide them up 50/50 if one spouse earns more/ owned more before the marriage then the other.

If you are wondering about your separate property, New York has set up very specific rules to help determine what separate property is and what it is not. Any property that is received by inheritance or as a gift, and settlements from lawsuits, or any property that is obtained by the use of separate property is protected under New York law. Your spouse is not allowed to fight for this property when you split because if never belonged to him or her. When you start in on your divorce agreements, make sure to list all separate property for your attorney. This way, he or she can help you to protect those assets.