Are Assets In A Divorce Split 50/50?
No, not necessarily. Certain states have an equal distribution law. Massachusetts has what’s called an equitable distribution law, and that requires that when the judge is looking at the marital estate and basically figuring out how much to allocate to one party as opposed to the other party that they consider 14 different factors that are enumerated under the law. Sometimes a starting point for a lot of judges is a 50-50, but there are a whole lot of different facts that can sway, under those considerations of 14 different factors, a judge to allocating more of the estate to one party as opposed to the other party.
Another consideration that the judge has to consider is if it’s potentially an alimony case, and again, an alimony case is a case where one spouse makes considerably more than the other spouse. The recipient spouse needs some supplemental income to be able to maintain his or her or close to his or her lifestyle and the pay where a spouse has the ability to pay that. In a case that is or potentially is an alimony case, the judge is required to consider all those same factors, those 14 different factors, at the same time that he or she is making an alimony award and at the same time that he or she is deciding how much of the marital estate to award to each party. They’re used as two sides of the same coin.