Property Division in Raleigh

In North Carolina the process of dividing the property and debts of a marriage is called “equitable distribution”. At any time after separation but before an absolute divorce, a husband and wife may file a claim for equitable distribution. Divorce bars your right to file a claim for equitable distribution unless you have a pending claim at the time of the divorce.

Distribution of Assets, Debts, and Personal Property (Equity Distribution)

At any time after separation in Raleigh but, a husband and wife may file a claim for Raleigh equitable distribution.  Property is identified as either marital or separate property, valued as of the date of separation.

North Carolina Laws for Unequal Distribution of Property

The Wake County Court considers twelve factors to determine distribution of property:

  • The financial state of the parties at the time of distribution,
  • Any prior marriage support obligations,
  • The duration of the marriage and the age and physical and mental health of both parties,
  • The need of a parent to occupy the marital residence and use the household effects for the care of the children of the marriage,
  • Any pension, retirement, or other deferred compensation rights that are not marital property,
  • Any contribution made to the acquisition of marital property by the party not having title,
  • The contribution made by one spouse to help educate or develop the career potential of the other spouse,
  • Any direct contribution to increase the value of separate property, which occurs during the course of the marriage,
  • The ability to liquidate the marital property,
  • The difficulty of evaluating an interest in a business and the economic desirability of retaining that interest,
  • The tax consequences to each party,
  • Any other factor that the court finds to be just and proper.

In North Carolina, property includes both assets and debts, including credit card debt, acquired during the marriage, and owned on the date of separation.

The Wake County Court is required to fix the net value of the marital property as of the date of separation, which is the fair market value less the amount of any encumbrances. It may be necessary to hire an appraiser or other professionals to place a value on property.

It’s important to note that Raleigh child support and Raleigh alimony support are separated from Raleigh equitable distribution. Pensions and retirement funds are considered marital property  (and are often very valuable) and consequently are subject to division.

Raleigh Marital Property

Marital Property refers too all real and personal property acquired by either spouse or both spouses during the marriage and before the date of the separation of the parties, and presently owned.

North Carolina Separate Property

Separate Property means all real and personal property acquired by a spouse before marriage or acquired by a spouse by bequest, devise, descent, or gift during the course of the marriage. However, property acquired by gift from the other spouse during the course of the marriage is considered separate property only if the intention is stated in the conveyance. Property acquired in exchange for separate property remains separate property regardless of whether the title is in the name of the husband or wife or both and shall not be considered to be marital property unless a contrary intention is expressly stated in the conveyance. The increase in value of separate property and the income derived from separate property is considered separate property. All professional licenses and business licenses, which would terminate on transfer is be considered separate property.

There is an equal division of marital property unless the Wake County court determines that an equal division is not equitable. If the court determines that an equal division is not equitable, the court will consider several factors to divide the marital property equitably.

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