Tag Archives: marital property

Obtaining Asset Value Through a Divorce SaleSome marital properties from a divorce are more valuable to you if you sell them instead of deciding which one of you gets to keep them. In a divorce sale or auction, you can convert properties that neither of you wants into money, which you split as part of your division of property. You do not have to organize your divorce sale together with your spouse, but he or she must approve the sale of any marital properties. You must plan ahead for your divorce sale to ensure that you will receive full value for your properties.

Advantages

You will have different needs as a single adult than when you were married. Some properties will be impractical to keep as part of your new lifestyle. For other properties, their monetary value is more useful than the enjoyment you get from them. Selling these properties may be to your advantage because:

  • Unlike the property itself, you can equitably divide the money from selling the property;
  • You may need the money to support yourself after your divorce;
  • Money from a divorce sale can help pay off marital debts; and
  • You can save on the cost of keeping and maintaining the property.

A Successful Sale

Once you have identified marital properties that you want to sell, you must research and plan before selling the items. You can cheat yourself and your spouse by selling these properties for less than they are worth. Here are three keys to a successful divorce sale:

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Guarding Your Business from Your DivorceYour efforts to protect your business from a possible divorce should have started at the beginning of your marriage. Keeping your business finances separate from your personal finances prevents your spouse from claiming ownership of your business. You can also create a premarital agreement that gives you complete control of your business in case of a divorce. Without these protective measures, your business is a marital property that you must account for in the division of property. You can maintain control of your business after your divorce, but it may require some sacrifices. Here are four steps to protect your business during your divorce:

  1. Separate Business from Marriage: Your business may already be a marital property if you invested marital assets into it. Moving forward, you should create a wall between your business and personal finances. Have separate accounts for business and personal expenses and do not transfer money between them. Limit your use of marital properties as part of your work. You should have separate business and personal finance records.
  2. Ease Your Spouse Out of the Business: Your spouse should no longer be involved in your business, whether as an owner or an employee. You can offer to buy his or her ownership interest in your business. You can fire your spouse as an employee but should understand the consequences of this action. By cutting off your spouse’s source of income, he or she will be more dependent on you following the divorce. You can instead lessen your spouse’s role in your business and encourage him or her to seek new employment.
  3. Assess Your Business: You need an accurate value for your business to ensure a fair division of property. Overvaluing your business means you will give up too much in order to keep it during the division of property. You must assess both the current and future value of your business. You can be conservative in projecting your business’s growth and the economic outlook for your industry.
  4. Identify Bargaining Chips: You will need to give up other valuable marital properties in order to keep complete ownership of your business. Privately decide which properties you are willing to sacrifice but do not lose leverage by letting your spouse know the properties you think are expendable. Your marital home may be your most valuable bargaining chip.

Your Business as a Marital Property

By protecting your business, you are also protecting your source of income and something you have invested great time and energy into. A Kane County divorce attorney at Goostree Law Group can give you strategies for keeping your business during a divorce. Schedule a free consultation by calling 630-584-4800.

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Determining If You Need a Premarital AgreementFor all of the work that goes into creating a premarital agreement, you want to feel assured that your effort was worthwhile. Premarital agreements settle the same division of property issues as a divorce, which requires accounting for your individual properties and debts. You may feel uncomfortable discussing the possibility of divorce before you have married. Not every marriage needs a premarital agreement. However, you should weigh the potential benefits of an agreement before dismissing the idea because it is at least worth a discussion.

Financial Protection

A premarital agreement is most useful when the parties own several properties from before their marriage. In the agreement, you can:

  • Differentiate between marital and nonmarital properties; and
  • Determine which marital properties you will receive in case of a divorce.

The agreement will protect your ownership of key assets, such as your business interests and retirement benefits. An agreement can still be useful if you have not accumulated many premarital assets. Your spouse may have premarital debts, such as student loans, which you may share responsibility for during your marriage. A premarital agreement can separate the debts you are each liable for in case of divorce.

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Workers' Compensation Part of Income for Support PaymentsIllinois divorce courts consider workers’ compensation benefits and personal injury damages much the same way as other properties. They are marital property if they originated during the marriage. Any compensation awarded before or after the marriage is non-marital property. Determining which status applies can be crucial because injury compensation is often lucrative:

  • Workers’ compensation covers medical costs and gives periodic payments to replace lost income due to temporary or permanent disability; and
  • Personal injury compensation is usually a lump sum but can be more valuable than workers’ compensation because it includes pain and suffering.

Even when injury compensation is not a marital property, it can still affect spousal maintenance and child support payments.

Spousal Maintenance

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Marital Property Has Monetary, Sentimental ValueDivorcing spouses are required to divide their marital property as part of the settlement. It is important to accurately value all of your assets to ensure that you are getting an equitable share. There are tangible and intangible ways you can assign worth to assets, and understanding them is key to successfully negotiating your division of property. If the court is forced to decide on the division of property, it may not know the personal importance you place on assets that seem less valuable.  When assessing the value of your marital property, there are four questions that you should answer.

Which Properties Are Shared?

Before assigning values to your properties, you need to identify your marital properties that will be subject to division. Courts typically consider marital properties to be those that:

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Goostree Law Group

Goostree Law Group

 555 S. Randall Road, Suite 200
St. Charles, IL 60174

 630-584-4800

 1770 Park Street, Suite 205
Naperville IL 60563

 630-364-4046

 400 S. County Farm Road, Suite 300
Wheaton, IL 60187

 630-407-1777

Our Illinois divorce attorneys represent clients in Kane County, DuPage County, Kendall County and DeKalb County, including Geneva, Batavia, St.Charles, Wayne, Wasco, Elburn, Virgil, Lily Lake, Aurora, North Aurora, Elgin, South Elgin, Bartlett, Crystal Lake, Gilberts, Millcreek, Maple Park, Kaneville, LaFox, Yorkville, Oswego, Plano, Sugar Grove, Big Rock, Bristol, Newark, DeKalb, Sycamore, Naperville, Wheaton, West Chicago, Winfield, Warrenville, Downers Grove, Lombard, Oak Brook, Streamwood, Hoffman Estates, Barrington, South Barrington, Lake Barrington, Schaumburg, Big Grove, Boulder Hill, Bristol, Joliet, Kendall, Lisbon, Minooka, Montgomery, Plainfield, Sandwich, Yorkville and many other cities.

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