In North Carolina, property division between divorcing spouses is governed by the principle of “equitable distribution.” A judge would determine what is “marital” property versus “separate” property, and under ordinary circumstances, property deemed to be “marital” in nature would be divided equally.
Sometimes, however, a court may determine that an equal division is not a fair, or “equitable” division of property. A lengthy list of factors can be considered when deciding whether one person should receive more or less than an equal share. This list can include such issues as the relative ages of the parties, for example, or whether one party might have a special need for occupying the marital home for purposes of raising the couple’s children.
As with all issues arising out of divorce or separation, the division of a couple’s assets, property or debts can be accomplished without the need for litigation if an agreement can be reached first. However, due to the complicated nature of North Carolina laws, a divorcing individual should ensure they have reviewed all of their assets and obligations with an attorney prior to signing away valuable rights. Doing so can help promote settlement, but also give the client the confidence to know that they have a competent counselor on their side.
Sometimes going to court is the only way to achieve justice.