A divorce may be an amicable, contentious or collaborative procedure. Regardless of the nature of the process, every divorce can be an unsettling event for any family.
Couples planning a divorce can prepare for their post-marital lives by learning the facts about divorce in Massachusetts.
Massachusetts is an equitable liability state. The objective of the division of property between the divorcing parties is fair, but not necessarily equal, distribution.
The distribution of assets include:
- Marital property division, including the marital home
- Retirement funds
- Family business assets
A house is a marital asset if both spouses lived in the home. A judge may determine who will keep the home or how one party may buy out the other party.
Marital property may include retirement benefits which are subject to Massachusetts and federal divorce laws. A qualified domestic relations order, or QDRO, divides funds from a retirement plan after a divorce and is a process authorized by the federal law known as ERISA.
Family businesses may be marital property. The method of distribution of a business may include:
- The sale of the business and division of the proceeds
- A promissory note or payment plan from one spouse
- Concession agreements involving other property or alimony
Dividing your marital estate may be a challenging process. Understanding your rights and responsibilities under Massachusetts law can help you to focus less on emotional conflicts and more on providing future financial stability and well-being for yourself and your family.