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Posted on in Divorce

DuPage County divorce lawyersWhen navigating the divorce process, it is common for parties to feel discomfort while going over contentious issues. For many, the most contentious issues revolve around a couple's marital property. Regardless of the economic position of the couple, property division can include nuanced financial portfolios, valuable assets, and land property. As you and your legal team prepare for the divorce process, it is important to first gain an understanding of marital property division.

What Constitutes Marital Property

Here in Illinois, marital assets must be equitably distributed. To be clear, that simply means that all marital property must be divided fairly (not equally). Before a court can make any decision concerning marital assets, they must first determine what property is marital and what property is non-marital.

According to Illinois State Law, marital property is defined as property acquired during the marriage. Marital assets can range from real estate and vehicles to bank accounts and business interests. Non-marital assets include real estate acquired prior to the marriage, property or assets that are excluded because of a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement, and property or assets that were purchased with nonmarital assets.

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DuPage County divorce attorney right, spouse's debtThe distribution of marital property is a key issue that comes up in divorce proceedings. Illinois is an "equitable distribution" state, which means marital property is not necessarily divided in half, but rather in a way that is "fair and equitable."

The first step in determining which party is responsible for paying off debt is to determine whether the debt is marital or non-marital. Marital debt is debt acquired by the parties during the course of the marriage. This debt includes but is not limited to residential mortgages, car loans, and credit card debt. It does not matter whose name is on the debt. However, the important distinction is what the debt was used for, and whether it benefitted the marital estate.

Student Loan Debt and Marital Assets

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