Orlando Property Distribution Lawyer
Family lawyer in Orlando ensures fair distribution of property
Based in Orlando, the Law Offices of Steve W. Marsee assists clients throughout central Florida with the complex family law issues that accompany divorce, including property distribution. As one of the most experienced family law lawyers in Orlando, as well as a certified family law mediator and trial attorney, Mr. Marsee understands that every person’s situation is unique and that ensuring a fair distribution of property in a divorce demands individualized representation.
Florida is an “equitable distribution” state, meaning that with the dissolution of a marriage, all marital assets are to be divided fairly between former spouses. To save time and money, individuals may agree on a property split before the dissolution proceedings. This is known as a matrimonial settlement agreement or a stipulated settlement. If the agreement is reasonable, the court may approve it as written and incorporate it into the Final Dissolution of Marriage. If a workable settlement agreement cannot be achieved through negotiation, the court divides the marital assets using a step-by-step approach:
- The court goes through a discovery process to classify which property and debt should be considered marital
- It assigns a monetary value to the marital property and debt
- It distributes the marital assets between the two parties in an equitable fashion
Equitable does not necessarily mean equal. Florida law recognizes that a 50-50 split is not appropriate in every situation. However, when determining how to divide the marital property, the court begins with the premise that the distribution should be equal unless there is a reason for an unequal distribution based on all of the relevant factors, including:
- The contribution to the marriage by each spouse, including contributions to the care and education of the children and services as homemaker
- The economic circumstances of the parties
- The duration of the marriage
- Any interruption of personal careers or educational opportunities of either party
- The contribution of one spouse to the personal career or educational opportunity of the other spouse.
- The desirability of retaining any asset, including an interest in a business, corporation or professional practice, intact and free from any claim or interference by the other party
- The contribution of each spouse to the acquisition, enhancement and production or the improvement of income, or the incurring of liabilities to, the marital assets and the non-marital assets of the parties
- The desirability of retaining the marital home as a residence for any dependent child of the marriage, or any other party, when it would be equitable to do so, it is in the best interest of the child or that party, and it is financially feasible for the parties to maintain the residence until the child is emancipated or until exclusive possession is otherwise terminated by a court of competent jurisdiction
- The intentional dissipation, waste, depletion or destruction of marital assets after the filing of the petition or within two years prior to the filing of the petition
- Any other factors necessary to ensure equity and justice between the parties
In marriages and committed relationships, the individuals work hard to contribute meaningfully to the household and acquire assets. Protecting those assets and developing an equitable property division is important so that everyone can move forward following a divorce. An experienced attorney from an Orlando divorce law firm can help with the process.
Seek experienced representation from one of the most dedicated family lawyers in Orlando
Going through a divorce or other family law matter may pit you against the person whom you once trusted the most in complex legal situations. It can be virtually impossible to learn the applicable laws and deal with the emotional trauma produced by such a situation. Steve Marsee knows this, as he went through it himself and was even told by the judge handling his case that he should go to law school and use his experience to help others. The Law Offices of Steve W. Marsee puts his personal life experiences and extensive knowledge of complex marital and family law to work to help you obtain a balanced result in your case. If you are facing divorce and need to protect your interests, contact the Law Offices of Steve W. Marsee today for a consultation.