The difference between marital and non-marital property

Dividing up property is a big deal in divorce proceedings. Property can be broken down in terms of money, which is why it plays such an important role in divorce. Parties to a divorce want to ensure that they come out of the divorce as financially stable as possible. Each person entering into a marriage comes to the marriage with his or her own financial portfolio. Some portfolios are better than others, and more stable, which is why during a divorce there can be a great deal of tension regarding property division.

Marital assets are those assets that come about during the life of the marriage. Any money, property or other items with a monetary value that are acquired in a marriage is property of both parties to the marriage. Hence, each party has a right to it. This is why there are do's and don'ts with respect to how to treat marital property and non-marital. Ideally, marital and non-marital property is always kept separate, but in many instances that is not the case. When there are discrepancies in what is and what isn't marital property in a divorce, the courts are usually called on to make an informed determination.

Non-marital property, that is property that belonged to a party before the marriage, is not subject to division for divorce purposes. This is reserved for marital property only. For those who have considerable wealth before entering into a marriage, a prenuptial agreement is not a bad idea. A prenuptial agreement basically states that whatever someone comes into the marriage with financially, they leave with upon divorce.

Property division can be difficult to navigate especially if there is a lot of property involved. Knowing one's rights and responsibilities in this matter is imperative.