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How do you know what property is separate?

On Behalf of | Jan 5, 2023 | Divorce |

When going through divorce, you likely have many concerns about your assets. After all, asset division is one of the toughest parts of the divorce experience for many people.

To properly understand asset division, you need to first understand separate versus community property. How do these properties work?

Types of separate property

The Business Professor explains separate versus community property in divorce. First of all, separate and community property will determine what property you get to keep versus what ends up in division between you and your spouse.

Separate property is the property that you own solely. This property does not get divided. Assets included in separate property typically include inheritances, things given to you before your marriage, gifts given to you specifically during the marriage, and assets that you keep separate from your spouse.

Community property includes jointly owned assets. This includes anything that has both your and your spouse’s name on it, or things that you paid for with both of your financial earnings. Typically, this includes cars, houses, physical land-owning properties and other big-ticket purchases.

Separate vs community property

Since most of the big money resides within community property, this is why it creates so much stress and anxiety for people going through divorce. However, most states abide by equitable or equal division of assets. This means that no matter what assets you end up with, they will hold equal or equitable value to the assets that your spouse gets.

Fortunately, you will likely get to keep most of the items that you find sentimental, or things that you owned before your marriage, which alleviates some stress for many.