Experienced Divorce Attorneys in Scottsdale, Arizona
During divorce proceedings, parties may sometimes have a hard time deciding how to divide their property or any debts they may have incurred. As Arizona is a community property state, you would think the process is easy: split any assets acquired or debts incurred during the marriage. Unfortunately, it can be and often is much more complicated than that.
When a couple decides to divorce, many questions may arise regarding the division of assets and debts. A bank account may be simple enough to divide, but what happens with items not as easily divided or valued, such as the house, student loans, or even retirement funds? Sometimes premarital assets are used to acquire community assets, such as using monies one party had prior to marriage to help purchase a home titled in both parties’ names. Community monies may be used to pay off one party’s student loans or other premarital debt.
Other times, the parties have decided to share a bank account that one spouse had opened and was using prior to the marriage. It may be now difficult to separate out the premarital funds from community funds deposited during the marriage. Another potential issue may arise if the parties have more debt than assets. All of these scenarios are common and can complicate the division of assets and debts during the divorce process
The goal for any Scottsdale divorce attorney is to make the division of assets and debts as fair as possible for both parties. It is easier said than done and can be the subject of significant conflict. When parties cannot agree, the Court will undertake the division as it sees fit.
Oftentimes the court may decide it’s best to liquidate the community assets in order to pay off community debt, then split any remaining monies between the parties. This type of wholesale liquidation and division may simplify things for the Court but may be extremely unsatisfactory and disconcerting to both parties– particularly if you and your spouse have spent years acquiring your assets or accumulating savings for retirement.
It is always the best course of action to try and reach a resolution on the division of assets and debts with your spouse if you are seeking to maximize the preservation of assets in whole.
If you are considering divorce or are in the midst of a divorce, and the division of assets and debts is a major issue and the source of much conflict, consulting with an experienced attorney may help you to resolve these conflicts.