Equitable split of assets question

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Equitable split of assets question

Unread postby Schmerv » Thu Sep 07, 2017 5:48 am

Trying to get a sense of how equitable is interpreted.

I'm close to a divorce after 25 years of marriage. Thankfully in this case, we have no kids, so no custody/child support issues to deal with.

Live in Pennsylvania. I make a good full time salary, wife has a part time job. basically I've paid for everything and she uses her income for "her" money. She is capable of having a decent full time job, but has been unwilling to take positions outside of a narrow range of jobs.

Between paid off house, other assets and retirement accounts, we have about 1 million in marital assets, which has been paid for by my earning power almost entirely. I also have ~2 million in inherited assets. I understand though that money is considered separate, it is considered in calculating equitable splits.

So, is equitable split in Pennsylvania 50% of marital assets? 65%? More?

All the reading I've done so far is vague, and I'm just trying to understand.
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Re: Equitable split of assets question

Unread postby LovingDadof2 » Thu Sep 07, 2017 7:05 am

Schmerv wrote:Between paid off house, other assets and retirement accounts, we have about 1 million in marital assets, which has been paid for by my earning power almost entirely.

This makes no difference. It is all considered a marital asset if obtained during the marriage, no matter who paid for it.

Schmerv wrote:I also have ~2 million in inherited assets. I understand though that money is considered separate, it is considered in calculating equitable splits.

So, is equitable split in Pennsylvania 50% of marital assets? 65%? More?

I am not personally familiar with PA law, but my understanding is that as long as the inheritance still resides in your name only, was not commingled (e.g., put in joint checking accounts) then that asset is considered separate and will not be equitably distributed during the divorce. The key is not commingling the inheritance. Interest from an inheritance is considered income and could be factored into spousal support calculations.

Now, I have read in other states a judge can view your inheritance as an asset and give your STBX favor (something she wishes for b/c you have the means to obtain yourself with inheritance) when dividing the marital assets. Others with more experience I am sure will chime in.

I highly suggest you consult with a lawyer (you certainly have the means) to protect your assets.
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Re: Equitable split of assets question

Unread postby Schmerv » Thu Sep 07, 2017 8:57 am

Thanks for your thoughts.

Yeah, I should talk to a lawyer. Just finding it hard to make that call.

I have been very careful to keep the inheritance separate (about six months before my father passed a decade ago, wife was acting squirrelly about $, and so that made me cautious... glad now that I did that).

I hear you about everything being considered marital assets regardless of who earned the income.
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Re: Equitable split of assets question

Unread postby Havalu7 » Thu Sep 07, 2017 9:59 am

Bro the call needs to be done to protect your < hindquarters >(ets).

You haven't gone much into the issue of WHY you are getting divorced or leaning that way?

Care to swerve into that lane Shmerv? It has nothing to do with your assets (depending on PA law), but it might help with the strategy that is available here. Care to expound?

With those types of monies on the line spend a little to protect a lot.

Make sense sir?
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Re: Equitable split of assets question

Unread postby Schmerv » Thu Sep 07, 2017 10:36 am

The why is a combination of things in a rough last two years -- dealing with complicated family stuff, she's having a midlife crisis over career / personal disappointments, I've struggled with keeping communications open with her through all of this. Over the past 9 months she's been so angry and hostile about the first two issues that it's been hard to engage about much of anything.

I now realize that the hostility is likely a result of the final issue.... an affair on her part which may or may not be over. I just stumbled on concrete evidence of it. (Crazy thing is, last fall I had an intuition about her being involved with the man she had her affair with, but talked myself out of it, gotta trust that gut more!)

I'd like to think we can get through all of this, but it will NOT be easy and I need to be realistic. The betrayal, the lying, and all of the other stuff this stirs up is hard to process after spending 25 years with someone I love (still) and respected/trusted so much. Always thought she had more character and honesty than this. She was always deeply critical when we heard stories of infidelity in other marriages.

I will see a lawyer asap. It just makes sense to gain clarity on the whole process.
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Re: Equitable split of assets question

Unread postby Trevor » Thu Sep 07, 2017 10:39 am

Have you had sex with her since discovering her adultery?

Gotten tested for the full schedule of STDs including HIV/AIDS?
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Re: Equitable split of assets question

Unread postby Schmerv » Thu Sep 07, 2017 10:50 am

Trevor wrote:Have you had sex with her since discovering her adultery?

No

Trevor wrote: Gotten tested for the full schedule of STDs including HIV/AIDS?

Not yet
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Re: Equitable split of assets question

Unread postby Trevor » Thu Sep 07, 2017 10:53 am

1. Good. Don't. It would constitute "condonation" and take steam out of your case.

2. Do so as soon as possible. Don't wait for it to hurt when you pee. This step also documents your concerns about your own health risks. Paramount is that it is a very smart move.
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Re: Equitable split of assets question

Unread postby Anything4Her » Thu Sep 07, 2017 12:11 pm

OP,

For a 25 year marriage where you have been carrying the water, you are at hazard for paying alimony.
http://www.mainlinedivorcemediator.com/ ... -Mediation

Do you have solid proof of infidelity? If so, that can affect alimony in PA.
https://www.mypadivorcelawyer.com/Blogs ... a-Div.aspx
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Re: Equitable split of assets question

Unread postby Tom Kirkpatrick » Thu Sep 07, 2017 1:28 pm

You've got several concurrent issues in your post:

Schmerv wrote:Trying to get a sense of how equitable is interpreted.
"Equitable distribution" is based upon a party's "perceived" ability (read, "likelihood") to recover from divorce. Depending upon your attorney's negotiation prowess, the outcome will likely be good for her, not so good for you. This varies by jurisdiction and the judge's (often unpredictable) mood for the day.

Schmerv wrote:I also have ~2 million in inherited assets.
So long as these assets haven't been co-mingled in any way, they're still yours. But that doesn't prevent your STBX from demanding 50% of that inheritance.

Schmerv wrote:.....we have about 1 million in marital assets.....
Given her (relatively) limited earning capacity, if argued in court, her "equitable" share will likely be somewhat greater than 50%. But that balance will likely shift if/when she becomes fully self-supporting; gainfully employed @ 40 hrs/wk. If she refuses to obtain full-time employment, you should make every attempt to have her income imputed.

Anything4Her wrote:Do you have solid proof of infidelity? If so, that can affect alimony in PA.https://www.mypadivorcelawyer.com/Blogs ... a-Div.aspx
^^^^^ +1

PA is a commonwealth state. Unlike progressive jurisdictions, old-school, morality laws still apply. Do diligent research on alimony vs infidelity in PA.

Tom
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