Marital assets are not always split 50/50. Marital assets are split according to “equitable distribution.”
It is easy to confuse equitable distribution with equal distribution, but they are not the same. Equal distribution would be a 50/50 split. Equitable distribution takes many factors into account, including the length of the marriage, the contribution of both parties to the marriage, and a host of other factors.
Minnesota courts do treat the contributions of a homemaker as being equal in value to the contributions of a bread-winner. You are at no special advantage or disadvantage if you made more or less money than your spouse. Family law in MN assumes that both spouses were responsible for amassing the marital estate.
Equitable distribution is really just another way of saying “fair.” The court strives to remain fair in how it deals with your assets and debts. That doesn’t mean that you’ll feel like the settlement is fair, nor does it mean that the courts are always right. It is what it is.
Equitable distribution is one reason why divorce mediation may be the right option for many families. You and your ex probably have a better idea of what is truly fair and equitable to both of you than a judge does. If you are both truly committed to creating a fair result and are not worried about punishing your spouse then mediation may be a good option for a better marital asset division.
One thing that could affect the way that marital property is distributed is your own conduct during the divorce. It is important to avoid attempting to conceal or transfer marital property in an effort to keep it. Such an action can harm your case significantly when it is revealed.
If you are concerned about protecting your assets it is very important for you to speak with a family law attorney right away. Why not come to BGS? We’ve been serving the Minneapolis metro area for over 75 years, and we can help you protect as much of your property as possible while you’re going through this difficult time.