Dividing marital property is never easy when you’re going through a divorce. It can be especially difficult when it comes to your house. Your home is often one of your largest assets, and it’s also filled with sentimental value and priceless memories. Be sure to speak to an experienced divorce attorney in Jacksonville if you’re facing divorce and the division of property.

Marital Property in Florida

Let’s first review how marital property is defined. Marital property in Florida includes all assets and debts acquired by either spouse, unless a valid written agreement states otherwise. This is regardless of which spouse holds the property title or debt. Marital assets can include property, money and benefits such as retirement accounts. In most cases, the courts can only divide marital property and not property acquired before the marriage or separate property.

In Florida, marital property is divided fairly between both spouses. This is known as equitable distribution. Once the court determines which property is non-marital or separate, it will determine how to divide the marital property under the premise that it should be fair. Your divorce attorney in Jacksonville can further explain the equitable distribution factors contained in the Florida Statutes.

Is My Home a Marital Asset?

In Florida, the family home is subject to equitable distribution and what is deemed fair by the court. Assuming your house was purchased after your marriage, it is considered a marital asset. The issue may become more complex when the house was purchased prior to the marriage. In such cases, the court will thoroughly review the circumstances of the situation.

What Happens to My Home?

There are numerous options for divorcing couples when making decisions on the family home. It’s always easiest when both spouses can work together to reach an agreement about the house. But in real life, that’s not always possible. When determining what happens to the house, there are many factors to consider. These include whose income is higher and who will have custody of any children involved. This is when it becomes even more imperative to work with a knowledgeable divorce attorney in Jacksonville. Here are the two most typical scenarios.

Selling the House

The most straight-forward solution for some divorcing couples is to sell the family home. The court can also order the spouses to sell the house if they cannot reach another agreement.
Additionally, if there aren’t enough other marital assets to balance out the equity or if neither spouse can obtain a mortgage, they’ll be forced to sell the home. When ordered to sell, the court typically issues an order defining how the proceeds will be divided once it sells.

Keeping the House

The family home does must not always be sold in a divorce. If one spouse keeps the house, the court can award more of the other assets to the other spouse. This helps to keep the distribution equal and fair. In states like Florida, the spouse not keeping the home is entitled to half of the value of the home. In these cases, the spouse retaining the home may buy out the other spouse’s share in the house.

Contact a Divorce Attorney in Jacksonville

Not knowing what will happen to your family home in your divorce can be emotionally trying. Working with an experienced, compassionate divorce attorney can make the process less stressful. If you’re seeking a divorce attorney in Jacksonville, contact the law offices of Patricia Parker at 904-479-5455.

Practice Areas

• Divorce
• Custody/Timesharing
• Alimony
• Child Support
• Division of Assets/Liabilities
• Paternity
• Department of Revenue

• Modification
• Relocation
• Contempt
• Enforcement
• Department of Children and Families
• Guardian/Attorney Ad-Litem
• Domestic Violence

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