If a divorcing couple can agree on how to divide assets, then the assets can be split in any way that they so choose. The splitting spouses may facilitate this process by hiring a mediator or an arbitrator and still be in control of how the property is divided. However, as soon as the spouses are at an impasse and request intervention by the court, they will be subject to the laws of the state regarding how to divide their assets. State asset division laws fall into two categories: communal property laws and equitable division laws.
Property division, also called asset division, is a process that occurs during a divorce to assign shared marital assets to either separating spouse. Property division is one of the most frequently contested parts of the divorce proceeding, with both spouses laying claim to the same assets and taking months or even years to adjudicate who should receive it.
Property is considered abandoned when an individual has relinquished possession and rights to an asset. Even if a spouse leaves the marital home, their property is not considered abandoned. Property is only abandoned when a clear statement of intent to abandon a piece of property is present. In all other cases, a judge will likely rule that assets are still able to be claimed and must be treated with care until they can be delivered to their rightful possessor.
If property division goes before a court, they will follow the appropriate state laws to divide up the assets. The state laws will either fall into the category of community property laws or equitable division laws.
Community property laws hold that all property acquired during the marriage is communal and therefore, in the event of divorce, the community property must be split evenly. To do this, the value of all community property is assessed and each spouse can receive no more than 50% of the assets by value. Equitable division laws do not aim for an exactly even distribution of assets. Instead, the judge will decide what proportion of the assets would be equitable to assign to each spouse and divides the property accordingly.
Unless explicitly stated through a financial order from the court, the answer is usually yes. Divorce allows both former spouses to remarry but does not end the financial obligations to each other. Some circumstances may be able to protect against a former spouse returning to lay claim against assets. Those circumstances include:
Unfortunately, many of these circumstances are out of the control of someone actively being divorced as they must have either already happened or depend on the actions of the former spouse.