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b2ap3_thumbnail_MeganDrury.jpgBy:  Attorney Megan Drury and Paralegal Ali Jaeger

Anyone going through a divorce will need to address multiple issues related to their finances and the property they own. When dividing marital property, a couple will need to consider all of the assets and debts they acquired during their marriage. One of the most important of these assets is the couple’s marital home. Real estate can be a significant investment, and each spouse will want to make sure they receive an equitable share of their home’s equity. The home will likely have sentimental value for both parties as well, and resolving disputes about ownership of the home can sometimes be difficult. 

Property Division Options Related to the Marital Home

In many cases, it will be necessary to perform an appraisal of a couple’s home during the divorce process. This will establish the current market value of the home, and a couple can determine the value of the equity they own based on the mortgage payments that have been made during their marriage and the amount remaining on the loan. This may also provide them with an understanding of the purchase price they will most likely be able to receive if they choose to sell the home.

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b2ap3_thumbnail_Meganweb.jpgBy: Attorney Megan Drury

There are a variety of financial issues that will need to be addressed during a divorce, and in some cases, one spouse may be asked to provide financial support to the other. Spousal support is not an issue that will factor into every divorce case, but it may be necessary in situations where the income earned by one spouse was used to cover most or all of the family’s living expenses. Decisions about spousal maintenance or alimony are based on the circumstances of the parties at the time of the divorce. However, these circumstances can change, and when a person who pays spousal support experiences issues that affect their ability to continue making these payments, they may be able to request a modification of their obligations.

Spousal Maintenance Modifications

The purpose of spousal support is to ensure that both parties will be able to maintain the standard of living they enjoyed during their marriage. When determining whether maintenance will be needed and the amount that will be paid, multiple factors may be considered, including each party’s level of education and work experience, the amount of time they were married, the division of marital property, and the age and physical and mental health of the spouses. 

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milwaukee divorce lawyerBy: Attorney Megan Drury

A couple that plans to get a divorce will need to address multiple types of assets during the property division process. While the division of some types of property may be fairly straightforward, determining to handle complex assets can often be a complicated process. This is especially true in cases where a couple owns a professional practice. After putting in so much time and effort to become a licensed professional and establish a practice, a person may be concerned about how their divorce will affect the ownership and operation of this type of business. If both spouses were involved in managing and operating a practice, they may be unsure about how to proceed during and after the end of their marriage. Since issues related to professional practices can become very complicated, a spouse can protect their rights and interests by working with an experienced divorce attorney.

Dividing or Sharing Ownership of a Professional Practice

Dentists, chiropractors, accountants, and multiple other types of professionals may establish private practices that allow them to interact directly with patients or clients, build strong and lasting relationships, and provide value to their communities. Professionals may need to receive extensive education and training, and they will also need to maintain the proper licenses to ensure that they can provide quality services to their clients. After putting in the time, money, and effort to establish themselves, build a successful business, and maintain a positive reputation, a professional may want to ensure that they will be able to maintain ownership of their practice and continue providing services to clients, regardless of what happens during their divorce.

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b2ap3_thumbnail_Max.jpgBy: Attorney Max Stephenson

Getting a divorce will affect the finances of both parties in multiple ways. Spouses will usually need to make significant changes to their living arrangements, lifestyles, and other aspects of their lives as they determine how they will be able to cover their ongoing expenses on a single income rather than sharing two incomes. While these adjustments may be difficult but necessary when both spouses earn similar incomes, there are some cases where one party may struggle to address their ongoing needs. If one spouse was a family’s primary income earner, the other spouse may need assistance as they establish a new life for themselves and determine how to cover their living expenses. In these cases, spousal maintenance (also known as alimony or spousal support) may be appropriate, and spouses will need to understand how the amount of support will be determined and how long payments may last.

Determining the Amount and Duration of Spousal Maintenance

There are multiple factors that may be considered when determining whether spousal support will be needed during and/or after a couple’s divorce. These factors may also help determine the amount that should be paid, and the length of time that payments will last. Relevant issues that may be considered during the divorce process include:

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b2ap3_thumbnail_Meganweb.jpgBy: Attorney Megan Drury

Wisconsin is a community property state, meaning that most property acquired by a married couple belongs equally to both. During a divorce, marital property is to be divided equally. This usually means 50/50, although there are a few reasons the court might deviate from this standard. One of the first steps of property division during divorce is sorting through all property owned by the spouses in order to determine what is marital property and what is separate property. Certain types of property acquired during the marriage by one spouse could be considered separate property. Conversely, some property owned by one spouse alone before the marriage could be considered marital property and subject to division during divorce. 

Making this determination can be complicated. You will likely need to enlist an attorney to help you sort this out if you are going through a divorce. 

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