Yours, Mine Or Ours: Property Division In Illinois Divorce
After matters related to child custody, property division is often the most complex and fraught aspect of a divorce. After sharing assets and expenses for years, it is no easy task or a former couple to separate their financial lives once again.
Thankfully, the right attorney can make the process much easier. At Kerley & Talken PC, we are ready to help you with all aspects of your divorce, including division of property, assets and debt. Our goal is to ensure that a divorce settlement is fair, sustainable and meets the needs of both spouses.
How It Works: An Overview
Like most of the country, Illinois follows the “equitable distribution” model of property division. This means that anything deemed marital property is to be divided equitably (though not always equally) in divorce. The end result should be fair and reasonable, and depending on the circumstances of the couple, that isn’t always achieved with a perfect 50-50 split of assets.
Equitable distribution applies to marital property, which encompasses nearly all property acquired by either spouse during the marriage (premarital assets are considered separate). Certain property acquired during the marriage can be considered separate, such as an inheritance or gift intended for only one spouse. However, they must be kept separate. If they become commingled with other assets, they may later be considered marital property.
Which Assets Are Most Important To You?
We will work closely with you to catalog and accurately assign a value to all assets. Then, we’ll discuss which assets are most important to you and prioritize those during any negotiations. Big-ticket items to be discussed include:
- The marital residence
- Any additional real estate
- Retirement assets (savings, 401(k) accounts, pensions, IRAs, etc.)
- Home furnishings
- Valuable collections
- A closely held business
Obviously, it is not possible or desirable to divide each asset in half. By assigning an accurate dollar value to each, spouses can prioritize the illiquid assets that they wish to keep intact and negotiate an exchange of their stake in other assets.
Let Us Guide You Through This Complicated Process
The attorneys at Kerley & Talken PC will advocate strongly for your best interests in asset division and all other aspects of divorce. Moreover, we will focus on the assets and the outcomes that are most important to you.