Areas of Concern During Divorce ProceedingsThere are numerous questions that are raised during divorce proceedings. Whether the parties are represented by counsel or are representing themselves, numerous issues should be discussed.
Real PropertyIssues involving real property such as real estate often arise in divorce proceedings. Issues involving continued ownership of the marital residence or selling the marital residence should be addressed. Many times one party will stay in the marital home for a period of time or until the parties’ minor children reach the age of majority. If the marital home is to be sold, the parties must discuss how the proceeds of the sale will be distributed. Furthermore, depending upon the time of year that the marital home is sold, the issue of which party will be permitted to write off the interest paid on the home will arise, as will the issue of which party will be responsible for capital gains taxes, if any capital gains result from the sale of the home. If the marital home is in need of repair, one or both parties may be responsible for the costs of repair to get the marital home in sellable shape.
Personal PropertyIssues involving personal property will arise during divorce proceedings. Personal property may include:
- Bank and other financial accounts.
- Vehicles, boats, trailers, and other recreational vehicles.
- Retirement benefits.
- Pension and social security benefits.
- Stocks and bonds.
DebtsDebts that the parties incur during their marriage should be divided between the parties. Some jurisdictions do not divide the marital debt in half and instead look to see whether the parties jointly incurred the debt during the marriage. The parties should present a clear and concise summary of all of their debts for a proper determination. The parties may also agree upon debt allocation.
Children and SupportIssues involving children may be among the most difficult to sort through. Some of the issues may include:
- Payment of medical expenses.
Miscellaneous IssuesThere are numerous miscellaneous issues that may be raised during divorce proceedings. Parties must also consider:
- Life insurance. Whether the custodial or non-custodial parent will be required to maintain life insurance for the benefit of the children.
- Medical insurance. Which party is required to make sure that the children remain insured?
- Income tax. If back taxes are owed, which party will be responsible? If current or estimated taxes are owed, which party will be responsible for the payment thereof?
Copyright 2011 LexisNexis, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc.