Brian D. Perskin & Associates

How Does Equitable Distribution in New York Work?

Equitable distribution is the legal process of dividing properties between spouses who are undergoing a divorce. Equitable distribution in New York involves properties that were acquired by or owned by either of the spouses. Distribution of properties must be mutually decided or as ruled by the Court.

In New York, all properties and earnings acquired and owned by the couple, jointly or separately, during the marriage are subject to equitable distribution. This ruling deviates from the common law stating that properties acquired during the marriage shall be distributed accordingly to the owner of the property or the spouse to whom the property is named after. Equitable distribution in New York is more complicated than that because it can be difficult to determine which properties are marital or shared and which are separate.

Marital Property

Marital properties are those assets, acquisitions and enhanced earnings owned during the marriage or before a separation agreement has been duly executed.

In New York, "enhanced earnings" pertains to additional income derived when a spouse's business is established or has increased in value or when either of the spouses has acquired a degree or a license in the course of the marriage.

Marital debts or debts incurred during the marriage are also subject to equitable distribution in New York regardless whose debts it was.

Marital properties are not necessarily distributed equally between spouses. Both shall agree to what each other gets but if things get more complex, the Court shall decide which properties go to the respective spouse.

The following are some of the factors considered in the distribution of marital properties:

• Spouse's income during the marriage and after signing a separation agreement
• Years of marriage
• Age and health
• Children's custody
• Inheritance and pension rights after divorce
• Financial support after divorce
• Direct or indirect contribution to properties and earnings acquired during the marriage
• Future financial circumstances
• Tax consequences
• Abuse of property
• Spousal abuse

Separate Property

Properties that are not subject to equitable distribution includes the following:

• Properties acquired prior to the marriage
• Inherited properties
• Gifts that came from someone else other than the spouse
• Personal injury compensation
• Properties that are considered separate based on a written agreement between the spouses
• Increase in value of or income from the above mentioned properties

Separate property is anything you have acquired alone. The spouse owning separate properties gets to keep them by himself/herself. However, if the property has somewhat increased in value or gain income through the help of your spouse or anyone in the family, then, it will also be subject to equitable distribution in New York.

If you are going through the divorce process you will need an experienced and seasoned divorce lawyer in New York. These issues can become complicated and it is best to seek professional help from at attorney that has a long history of dealing with.

At the Law Offices of Brian D. Perskin, we have extensive experience in handling all types of divorce and family law issues, particularly contested divorce and complicated matrimonial and custody cases. Navigating matrimonial and family law cases, no matter the issue, is rarely easy.

Our team is comprised of skilled, dedicated and hardworking divorce and family law professionals, all of whom will assist you so that your divorce or family law matter can be handled in such a way as to benefit your current and future interests as well as those of your family.

Are you going through a divorce? Consult an experienced New York Divorce Attorney. Divorce and the legal issues associated with it can be complex and stressful, that is why having the assistance of a seasoned, reliable and aggressive lawyer is essential. Talk to an experienced divorce attorney in New York City about getting the best Equitable Distribution assistance for your case.