Annapolis Separate Property Attorney
When a couple decides to divorce, they must divide marital property between them. However, some pieces of property and specific assets may qualify as one of the spouse’s sole separate property. If you face a divorce in Annapolis and are unsure about your ownership rights over any property, contact Arn Family Law for a phone consultation today and learn how our Annapolis separate property lawyers can help you.
Why Work With Arn Family Law?
Any divorce can be a complex and stressful ordeal, but if you own a separate property you need an attorney who can protect your ownership rights in divorce.
- At Arn Family Law, protecting our clients’ interests is more than just a profession to us; it is our passion and you can expect professional, compassionate legal representation from our attorneys.
- We will thoroughly explain all aspects of your case so you can make informed decisions about your legal representation.
- Our Annapolis family law attorneys work as efficiently as possible to ensure the most cost-effective legal counsel for your divorce.
We understand how difficult divorce can be, so we strive to streamline the experience as much as possible for our clients.
What Will an Annapolis Separate Property Lawyer Do for Me?
Finding the right Annapolis separate property attorney can make a significant difference in the outcome of any divorce in Annapolis. Your attorney can help you gather the paperwork and documentation necessary to protect your ownership rights in divorce, including arranging expert valuations and assessments of your property to determine ownership and value. Your attorney can eliminate a great deal of the uncertainty that is sure to surround your questions about separate property in any divorce.
Defining Separate Property in Divorce
The Maryland family law court system recognizes two main types of property in a divorce: marital and separate. Marital property is all property, no matter how titled, acquired from the date of the marriage to the date of the divorce. Separate property is a property that was acquired before the marriage, by inheritance or gift from a third party, excluded by valid agreement, or directly traceable to any of these sources. For example, if one of the spouses owned a car and fully paid it off before the marriage, the car would be that spouse’s separate property. The same could apply to personal valuables, real estate, other vehicles, pets, and more.
It is important to remember that alterations to separate property during a marriage could lead to a judge deciding that property now qualifies as marital property due to the other spouse’s involvement. For example, if one spouse owned a business prior to the marriage but then had his or her spouse sign business documents as a co-signer or partner, the court will likely determine the business now qualifies as marital property. If one spouse contributes to the maintenance or increases the value of a piece of separate property, that property essentially becomes marital property.
Protecting Your Property in Divorce
If you wish to ensure ownership of your separate property in a divorce, you may do so by:
- Detailing specific terms of ownership in a prenuptial agreement with your spouse prior to the marriage; or
- Maintaining that property’s separate distinction by maintaining title solely in your name and not commingling that property with marital property or marital efforts.