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Property division: Splitting marital property

Although there are many difficult topics couples are forced to negotiate when going through a divorce in Iowa, separating property may be one of the most complicated. People get attached to property and belongings that they accumulated during the course of the marriage. In a divorce settlement, marital property is subject to division between parties, while separate property may stay in the hands of the original owner. At Janssen Law PLC, we understand that determining who is entitled to what in a settlement may seem overwhelming.

Marital property in Iowa is divided in an equitable fashion, meaning the judge who is over the case will choose who receives the property after carefully considering several factors, such as how long the marriage lasted. In addition to the family home, vehicles and furniture, marital property may consist of expensive collections, such as art, antiques, horses and coins. Lottery ticket winnings and income tax refunds, as well as any assets earned in a 401k plan, term life insurance plan or stocks may also be considered marital property.

Separate property, on the other hand, are items that a spouse held prior to the marriage. In order to remain separate, however, the title must remain in the sole name of the original owner. If the title was amended to include the name of the other spouse, the property then becomes marital and is eligible for division. Inheritance money, gifts given to either party by a third-party or compensation won in a personal injury lawsuit are also separate property.

To find out more about division of property, visit our family law page. 

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