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On behalf of Tasha K. Schaffner of Schaffner Family Law posted in divorce on Wednesday, August 29, 2018.

One of the most contentious issues during a marriage involves finances. Unfortunately, the process of getting a divorce also often involves disputes about money, usually over how to divide marital assets. Kentucky residents who are preparing to file for a divorce typically benefit from carefully reviewing their financial situations first.

Family courts in Kentucky seek to ensure that marital assets are distributed as equitably as possible. However, that does not necessarily entail splitting the marital property equally. Assets that appear to be comparable in value during the settlement negotiations do not always translate in an equitable split since some assets — such as retirement saving accounts — may be subjected to fees and penalties if they are accessed early. Likewise, other assets may grow in value over time while a spouse may have been awarded an account that stays static or loses value.

Each spouse may need to evaluate the cost of maintaining the marital home before deciding whether it should be sold. Though one party may think that children will fare better if they remain in the family house, the ongoing cost of maintaining the home must be considered. When it comes to settling other financial matters such as distinguishing between marital property and separate property, having clear records and separate accounts for particular assets can make the property division process easier.

Finally, couples may need to decide how to divide debts such as student loans and other unsecured obligations. A spouse who helped pay down the other spouse’s student loans may seek reimbursement during the settlement process. The implications of changing tax laws may also influence divorce negotiations. Kentucky residents may benefit from the advice of financial professionals along with legal guidance from an experienced attorney in order to obtain the settlement agreement that best suits their individual needs.

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