Marital assets are generally defined as all income, assets, and debts acquired during marriage. That property is considered equal property of both spouses and will therefore be fairly distributed after the divorce, with a couple of caveats. When marital property is distributed fairly, it is divided between the two spouses in the fairest manner that the court deems possible. Although this does not guarantee that the court will decide that the property should be divided equally (50-50), this is usually the case.
For example, if a couple bought a house, but only the husband's name was on the deed, the wife would still be entitled to a share of the value of the house if they divorced. State laws are relatively consistent, holding that marital assets are subject to division in a divorce and include all money earned during the marriage, even if it is in an account held solely in the name of your spouse. Thomas found out about the money after the divorce was final and asked a court to set aside the judgment. Courts are unlikely to consider expenses that benefit the family as dissipation of marital assets, but spending spousal money on a new love interest or paying separate debts with spousal money can be considered dissipation.
Characterization and valuation are at the heart of a business division, but business type, industry, revenue, gross versus net profit, community versus contributions and separate portions of ownership, the role of goodwill and future economic forecasts, and more, can influence how much of the business is community property versus separate property and how much you may have to pay your wife. The amount of money you leave with to secure your financial future will depend on several factors, the most important being whether the family's wealth was earned during the marriage or if the breadwinner made it before walking down the aisle. Keep in mind that money earned by a spouse before the date of separation that is not paid until after the date of separation is still spousal property. The longer the marriage, the greater the chances that the ex-wife will obtain a greater share of the marital assets.
If your soon-to-be ex had a lot of money before you married, chances are you won't get a dime. Now you must deal with calculating what percentage of the increase in the value of the home is marital and what is separate, also considering the amount of money that was channeled from your marriage to the property. The distinction between separate and marital assets can sometimes be complicated, such as when couples mix (mix) separate and marital funds in a bank account, or when they use money from a joint account to make improvements or mortgage payments on a home that one spouse owned before they married.