Equitable Distribution

Protecting your financial interests in a divorce often requires meticulous and detailed planning. The division of assets and debts often results in highly adversarial disputes. During this stage in the divorce process, it is vital to discuss your financial situation with an experienced attorney, in order to protect your interests and try to help you receive the best result during your high asset divorce.

The laws of North Carolina concerning equitable distribution are constantly evolving. We are experienced in working with clients to try to get them the best outcome by receiving a fair share of the property, even in complex property division circumstances. Contact our office today for a confidential consultation to discuss your rights.

North Carolina has a presumption that the marital estate should be split equally with one half going to each party. In many circumstances, however, this may be unfair. The law allows for amendments to the guidelines surrounding division of property. We will work with you to protect your best interests are maintained throughout the division of your martial property.

Understanding the Law of Equitable Distribution

Equitable distribution is the process by which the Court identifies and classifies the assets acquired by the parties during the course of the marriage, values the assets, and distributes them among the parties. North Carolina recognizes three types of property:

  • Marital property is all of the real and personal property acquired by the parties during the course of the marriage between the parties, but before the date of separation. Marital property is generally valued at the date of separation.
  • Separate property is all of the real and personal property acquired by one of the spouses before the date of marriage, after the date of separation or by inheritance or gift during the course of the marriage.
  • Divisible property is all increases and decreases in value of marital property occurring after the date of separation, but before the date of distribution. Divisible property is valued at the date of distribution.

Sometimes the lines between marital, separate and divisible property can become blurred.

The laws of North Carolina provide a distribution of property and debt acquired during the marriage should be distributed equally between both spouses. However, in certain circumstances “equitable” does not mean “equal.” For the purposes of equitable distribution, there is a strong presumption that an equal distribution of the marital assets is equitable, meaning that each spouse takes one-half of the marital estate. However, the law of North Carolina provides for specific factors in which a spouse may seek an unequal distribution of the marital assets.

In order to better understand your rights in dealing with the division of property in your divorce, contact our office to discuss this with an attorney who is experienced in handling equitable distribution for a consultation.