Sometimes the easiest part of divorce in Virginia is deciding to get one. Once that is settled, property division can become a huge challenge for some people. Spouses don't want to seem greedy, but they do want to make sure that they get what they need or are entitled to. We can make sure your property is fairly distributed, either through mediation or via the court system.
Virginia Calls For Equitable Distribution of Assets
In the state of Virginia, unless you're able to completely agree on all aspects of property division, your marital property must be equitably distributed between the two spouses. This does not mean that your property is tallied up and then split 50/50; the courts will consider many different factors. The judge will look at the monetary and non-monetary contributions of each party to the wellbeing of the family, as well as to the acquisition and care of the martial property. Any kind of property division in Virginia is regulated under the Virginia Code section 20-071.3.
When your property is being equitably distributed, the courts are generally only looking at your martial property—that is, all jointly titled property and any property acquired from the day you got married until the final separation. Separate property is what you owned prior to getting married, or after you were separated, plus any property acquired as an inheritance or a gift. Separate property is generally yours to keep, but if for some reason the value of some of that property increased during the marriage due to the active efforts of either party, it could end up being martial property.
The entire process of determining marital property versus separate property can be especially exhausting after a couple has been married for a number of years because the line between "mine" and "ours" can get a little blurry. If you would really like to try and work things out on your own before letting a court decide for you, mediation is a wonderful option. Smith Strong will facilitate a productive discussion and help you work through a fair division of all of your property.
Contact Smith Strong For Assistance With Property Division
Property division can be one of the most frustrating parts of divorce and there's no reason to let it go on and on. When you work with Smith Strong, our firm will try to make sure that your property is divided fairly and quickly.
We serve clients in the Richmond and Williamsburg metropolitan areas, so call us today at 804-325-1245 or 757-941-4298 for a SmartStart Comprehensive Case Preparation Meeting.
What to Expect at the First Meeting
At our first meeting, we'll provide:
- A straightforward and understandable explanation of the law;
- A candid assessment of your case; and
- A plan to obtain the best possible outcome, through settlement or litigation.
We provide personal attention to each client through skillful communication, agreeing upon a plan of action after listening carefully to the client’s unique situation and goals.
Why You Need an Attorney
Founding attorney Van Smith will often say, “I live simply, and carry that spirit into my practice. I don’t complicate my clients’ lives. I offer practical solutions, tailored for each situation. Our overriding goal is to help clients move through this transition and get back to fully living their lives, as quickly and as cost-effectively as possible.”
So, why do you need an attorney for your family law matter? Won’t that just make things worse? Why not wait to call an attorney if things get really out of hand?
When you’re ending a marriage, it’s tempting to just sign documents found online and move forward, however, you need an attorney, from the beginning, to ensure your long-term goals—for your finances, children, and future—are met. Careful planning now will save you from returning to court, living with regret, or enduring a poorly constructed support or custody plan later. You need to understand your options before signing an agreement.
A cautionary quote from one past client, “I didn’t even explore what I could have received in spousal support, in dividing retirement plans, reviewing marital assets, interest in my spouse’s business or life insurance—anything. I just rushed through. Now it turns out I could really use some help and I wish I’d thought it through more then.”
While we excel at negotiated agreements between parties, with most cases resolved privately, the attorneys at Smith Strong have been intensely trained to handle complex litigation on behalf of our clients.
View our Property Division Article Library by Category:
Property Division and Business Ownership
- Assessing the Value of a Business in a Divorce
- Help! We are Divorcing and a Business is Involved
- How to Keep a Business Alive After a Divorce
- Equitable Distribution of a Jointly-Titled Corporation
- How to Value a Small Business in a Divorce Proceeding
Property Division and Debt
Property Division Basics
- Dividing Real Property (vacation homes, investment real estate, etc.)
- Other Complex Asset Division Issues
- Dividing Trust Assets in Divorce in Virginia
- How is Debt Divided in a Divorce?
- Equitable Distribution in Divorce
- Dividing Marital Property: Recreational Interest Items
- Classification and Division of Stock Options in Virginia Divorce Law
- What Constitutes the Marital Estate?
- Initial Steps in Separating Your Assets
- Divorce: Assets and Their Inclusion in the Marital Estate
- Dividing the Marital Estate
- Allocating Household Furnishings after Divorce
- Valuation of Automobiles in a Divorce
- The Value of Children’s Automobiles in the Marital Estate
- The “Needs Hierarchy”
- Documents Used To Find Hidden Assets in a Divorce
- Protect Your Assets
- Valuation of Assets