Washington Property Division Attorneys
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In Washington, most assets and debts acquired during a marriage are considered community property. During a divorce, community property is subject to just and equitable division by the court. However, interpretations of just and equitable, as well as community vs. separate property, often vary widely.
At Anderson, Fields & McIlwain, Inc., P.S., we have helped hundreds of people through the property division process. Whether you need a simple division of community assets or valuation and separation of complex financial holdings, we can help. To schedule an appointment with our Washington property division lawyers, please call us at 206-905-4290 or toll-free 866-970-4558 or contact us online.
A more thorough dissertation is found in our book, Divorce in Washington Made Simple, which can only be purchased through our office.
Equitable Distribution: Debt and Asset Division
Equitable distribution does not necessarily mean the community property will be divided equally between the parties. Instead, the court strives for a distribution that it considers fair. Property division is based on several factors, including the economic circumstances of each spouse; generally, the disadvantaged spouse receives more of the property. The court does not consider marital fault in a divorce, but may consider the wasting, squandering or placing beyond reach of the court of community property and award compensatory maintenance (alimony).
Separate property may include property a spouse brings into the marriage and inheritances or gifts received outside of the marriage. Community property may include property and finances acquired during the marriage such as:
- Personal property (such as vehicles, art and furniture)
- Real estate (primary residence and other property)
- Bank accounts
You might not realize all the types of marital property that have value such as:
- Frequent flyer miles
- Stock options
- Disability benefits
- Personal injury judgments
Community debts, including mortgages, loans, credit cards and taxes, must also be divided.
Our attorneys can assist you in obtaining a value of the property and help you consider the tax consequences of a property settlement. For example, it may make sense to give the spouse with the lower tax rate more of the taxable assets. Please call our office at 206-905-4290 or toll-free 866-970-4558 for an appointment with a Seattle equitable distribution lawyer.