Marital Property Mistakes to Avoid

Marital Property Mistakes to Avoid

Financial problems and debt can be major issues in marriages – and in the divorces that may follow. Whether or not you and your partner are financially stable or struggling – and regardless of whether you are preparing for marriage, an anniversary or a divorce, avoiding the following mistakes with your marital property can be essential to protecting your interests in it… no matter what the future may hold:

Mistake 1: Not maintaining a personal checking account

In other words, putting all of your funds into a single joint account is usually a mistake, as it can complicate your claims and access to them if or when a divorce occurs.

So, the bottom line here is that you may want to consider maintaining a separate checking and/or savings account to set up some clear boundaries regarding marital versus separate property. Clear boundaries can be one key to a successful marriage – and they can facilitate a divorce process if the marriage doesn\’t work out.

Mistake 2: Using personal funds to pay off marital debts

When separate property is used to pay off marital debts, there\’s a risk that the payer will never be reimbursed for his or her expenditure. If the marital debt grows, it can be increasingly likely that reimbursement will never happen. So, it\’s best to serious consider whether you want to use (or lose) your separate property to the marital debt….or whether it may be time to explore other options.

Mistake 3: Assuming that property you had before the marriage will automatically remain separate property in divorce

This can be a costly mistake because, even if the property has not been comingled with marital property, it may have increased in value due to the contributions or investments of your partner/ex.

For instance, consider a home. If the husband owns the home going into the marriage, but the wife contributes to mortgage payments, assists in renovations and carries out general upkeep, she can have claims to some portion of the home in the event of a divorce.

So, don\’t assume separate property prior to a marriage will always remain so in divorce. If you really want to keep certain property as separate consider developing a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement..

Mistake 4: Not protecting business interests before a marriage sours

This mistake can cost people years of hard work developing and running a business. So, the bottom line here is that business owners may want to consider sooner rather than later how they will address their partner\’s potential interests in their business in the event of a divorce. Setting these terms up now can be essential to limiting costs (in terms of business losses and the costs of divorce) later.

Contact a Douglas County & Centennial Divorce Attorney at Robbins Law Firm LLC

For experienced, effective representation in Colorado divorce, contact a Douglas County & Centennial divorce attorney at Robbins Law Firm LLC by calling 720.617.2623 or by emailing us via the contact form on this page. Weekend and evening appointments are available upon request.

From our office based in Centennial, our attorney provides the highest quality family law services to clients in Centennial, Parker, Aurora, Castle Rock, Elizabeth, Douglas County, Arapahoe County, Elbert County, Jefferson County and throughout the state of Colorado.