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The concept of equitable distribution in divorce law

On Behalf of | Dec 6, 2021 | Family Law |

Spouses may amass significant assets during their marriage. If the marriage fails, questions arise about distributing assets during divorce proceedings. Each spouse may seek a mutual agreement or court decision favorable to them. Under Connecticut law, the legal concept of “equitable distribution” may significantly determine which spouse receives particular assets.

Equitable distribution may guide divorce settlements

A common misconception exists about equitable distribution. Namely, people assume that assets undergo a 50/50 split, as giving one-half to one spouse and one-half to another reflects equity. That is not necessarily how the law works, as other factors figure into asset division.

The cause for a divorce could lead to one spouse receiving more than the other. If one spouse’s egregious and abusive action contributes to the marriage’s collapse, the other spouse may seek and receive a greater amount of the divided property.

Other issues may impact a court’s decision. Suppose one spouse has medical issues that result in great expenses and a limited earning capacity. In that case, the court may consider such things when dividing assets or awarding spousal support.

A prenuptial agreement could affect how distributions work, as well. With a prenuptial agreement, one spouse signs a document with a pre-agreement about what he or she receives in a divorce.

Negotiating a settlement that is agreeable

Not all divorces go to trial and involve bitter fights inside a courtroom. Family law judges allow both parties to reach an agreeable settlement. Both spouses may negotiate a settlement that proves equitable. The negotiations could become tense, but the process may end without a trial.

That said, divorce negotiations may hit an impasse. Solutions could exist, such as going through the mediation process. If mediation and settlement negotiations don’t work, the process may move to trial.