Frequently Asked Questions about Asset Division in Oklahoma City
Reputable divorce lawyers provide complete answers
If you are planning to get a divorce, property division is one of the most important issues that must be resolved. But unlike orders for alimony, child custody or child support, a ruling on property division is usually not something you can modify at a later date. That means you’ve got one chance to secure a fair settlement or court decision. The divorce lawyers at Zuhdi & Flynn, PLLC are determined to do just that. We take meticulous care to get the details right and to alert the court to any facts that support your case for the property you deserve. To get you started, we offer this brief list of answers to questions our clients often ask:
- What is considered marital property in Oklahoma?
- What are the essential stages in the asset division process?
- What are some of the factors courts consider when dividing marital property?
- What is commingling and how does it affect asset division?
When you’re ready for answers specific to your situation, our seasoned attorneys are here to help.
Contact an Oklahoma City divorce lawyer for assistance with equitable distribution
Zuhdi & Flynn, PLLC fights for the property rights of our clients in divorce proceedings throughout Oklahoma. To make an appointment for a free consultation, please call 405-416-2711 or contact us online. We are located in Oklahoma City near the Quail Springs Mall.
Marital property comprises all assets and debt acquired during the marriage with a few exceptions, such as:
- Inheritances given to one spouse
- Gifts received by someone other than the spouse
- Assets gained through the exploitation of separate property, such as interest, rent, royalties, and increased value of market assets
Many clients do not realize that debt is treated as property, subject to the same distribution rules as your assets during a divorce.
There are three main stages in the equitable distribution process:
- Classification — In this stage, parties present an inventory of all their assets and their debt, and each item is determined to be either separate property owned by one spouse or part of the marital estate subject to equitable distribution.
- Valuation — Here, a dollar amount is assigned to each item.
- Distribution — Finally, the marital estate is divided between the parties in a manner that is fair but not necessarily equal.
Disputes can arise at any of these stages, which is why you need an experienced asset division lawyer guiding you through the process.
A court can consider any relevant fact when deciding how much property to award each spouse. Important factors typically include:
- The duration of the marriage
- Each spouse’s current financial position and earning potential
- The contributions of each spouse made to the marital estate
- Non-monetary contributions to the marriage, such as managing the household while a spouse advanced their career
- The age and health of the spouses
- Whether a spouse’s conduct had an adverse effect on the value of the marital estate, such as when a cheating husband or wife squanders money conducting an affair
Often, the most valuable asset is the family home. If there are children of the marriage, the court takes custody arrangements into account and weighs the importance of having the children continuing to reside in their home. The court treats possession of the home and ownership as separate matters.
Commingling of property occurs when parties treat their separate assets and debt as though they were marital property. Commingling can cause confusion in the first stage of the process and can result in formerly separate items being treated as marital property.