We duly note on our family law website at the Peoria Law Office of Katherine Kraus that asset identification, valuation and distribution in an Arizona divorce can quickly become a muddled and quite complicated matter.
It is, we stress, "a complex area of the law," best decided "on a case-by-case basis" with studied input from a practiced divorce attorney with demonstrated experience in property division matters.
The reasons for that are many. Importantly, assets must be properly categorized as either nonmarital (separate) or marital (jointly owned), given that their legal designation will determine their treatment in the distribution process.
That can be tricky in select instances, depending on when and how an asset was acquired, whether it was - in legal terms - "commingled" with other assets, and additional factors.
Although we state on our site that asset identification "goes way beyond the house and bank accounts," we would like to narrowly spotlight just the former in today's blog post. The family home is indeed just one of many assets commonly considered in an Arizona divorce, but it is undeniably a big one. For many divorcing parties, it is the paramount divorce-linked property.
The house can be a proverbial can of worms in an Arizona marriage dissolution. Do the parties contemplate that one impending ex will continue to live in it following divorce? If so, on what terms? How will ongoing duties such as maintenance costs and property taxes be dealt with?
And if the home is intended to be sold, when will that occur and with what type of understanding in place concerning the distribution and taxes owed, if any? A commentator in one national article on the many factors potentially relevant to the sale of a home linked with divorce rightly stresses that a party selling a home solo following a marital split "could take a bath in taxes."
Understandably, selling a home pursuant to the divorce process can entail some material complexities. A proven family law attorney can help a client work through the challenges and secure an outcome that is both equitable and aligned with best interests.