Going through a divorce typically means dividing marital property. From the start, you’ll come to find that this is one of the most challenging parts of the entire process.
Fortunately, with the help of a property division checklist, you can organize your assets with the hope of saving time and avoiding additional stress.
The assets you include in your property division checklist depend on a variety of factors. For example, you may have a long list of both marital and separate property. It’s important to know where each asset fits in, as this will help you create an accurate checklist that provides the guidance you’re seeking.
Your property division checklist may not match up exactly with your spouse’s, but that shouldn’t stop you from creating one. Here are the categories you can use and some of the items that fit under each one:
- Real estate: Family home, vacation home, rental property, undeveloped land and commercial real estate (such as if you own a business).
- Personal property: Antiques, artwork, collections, home furnishings, electronics, motor vehicles, guns, jewelry, clothing and home office equipment.
- Financial assets: Bank accounts (both savings and checking), cash on hand, educational accounts, retirement accounts, pensions, stocks and bonds, mutual funds, life insurance cash value, annuities and trusts.
- Business assets: Stake in any type of business, business equipment, professional practice, real estate and any other type of business interest.
What about debt?
You won’t include debt on your property division checklist, but you should have a separate list of your liabilities.
In many cases, some of your assets are also associated with debt. For example, you may not own your family home or motor vehicles outright.
There are many types of debt that require division in divorce, such as:
- Car loans
- Personal loans
- Home equity loans and lines of credit
- Credit cards
Don’t focus so much attention on your property division checklist and assets that you forget about joint debt.
Through the use of a property division checklist, you can more easily organize your assets as you move through the divorce process. Doing so will help you get what you deserve, while protecting your legal rights every step of the way.