It is a common trope that runs through TV and movies — a couple splits up, and one spouse ends up with the car, marital home, most of the money and even the dog. While most marital estates are not neatly cleaved in two and then parceled out after a divorce, it is also just as unlikely that one person will leave with almost everything in tow. As an equitable distribution state, Nebraska family law dictates that each person has a right to a fair share of the marital property.

So what is a fair share of marital assets? Since no two marriages are alike, every division of property will also differ. Typically, a judge will consider many different factors — including how long a couple was married and whether children are involved — when deciding how to equitably distribute property. While not necessarily even, the final division is usually considered fair.

People do not have to worry about handing over their personal assets. Property that was purchased before getting married, certain gifts and even inheritances do not have to be included during asset division. However, it is possible for separate property to later become marital property — such as an inheritance that has been commingled with marital funds — so a thorough examination of all property prior to division is a good idea.

Divorce can be an understandably difficult time for people in Nebraska, even when the decision to end a marriage is for the best. Understanding the process can erase some unnecessary fears and help individuals move forward with the process. This includes understanding equitable division of assets, which will result in the fairest division possible rather than leaving one partner high and dry.

Source: FindLaw, “Divorce Property Division FAQ”, Accessed on Nov. 6, 2017