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Difference between equitable and equal division of assets

by | Dec 26, 2022 | Divorce

When a couple decides to divorce, in addition to having to process the difficult emotions that come with the dissolution of a marriage and family, they have other things to consider, including the division of assets, the legal and physical custody of their children, and the ramifications of their decision to divorce. Divorce is a challenging time for all but understanding how the process works may help make it less stressful.

When a couple divorces in Ohio, the courts divide their assets using an “equitable” division of property instead of an equal (or “community”) division of property. Some states use one system and states that use the other.

Ohio divorce laws try to divide marital property fairly for the divorcing couple and family. The law instructs judges to consider multiple factors in dividing assets, including the couple’s assets and debts, their retirement accounts, their lifestyle, and the length of the marriage.

Awards of marital assets in Ohio

Courts distribute assets after carefully evaluating the couple’s financial situation. Marital assets include everything from the home that the couple shared, homes they owned as vacation homes or rental properties, any vessels such as boats or yachts, all cash in checking and savings accounts, as well as in possession of the divorcing individuals.

It is a legal obligation for divorcing spouses to disclose every single asset and debt that they have, including separate and secret assets, property or cash. Suppose one of the parties fails to disclose any of the above information. In that case, it is financial misconduct and subject to legal consequences, including the award of additional assets to the other party.