Property & Debt Division

Equitable Distribution

Over the course of a marriage, husbands and wives will acquire property. The property can include almost anything, such as real estate, cars, financial accounts, retirement benefits, insurance, business interests, furniture, furnishings, and a vast array of other personal property. North Carolina follows equitable distribution principles to divide property at divorce. After separation, either spouse may ask the court for an equitable distribution of the assets and debts acquired during the marriage. However, unless they have reached an agreement considering these matters in a separation and property settlement agreement prior to the absolute divorce, a claim for equitable distribution must be filed before the absolute divorce is granted. We will help you through all stages of the equitable distribution process, starting with identifying the property and debts involved in the case. We will then assist you in classifying the property and debt as marital, separate, mixed, and/or divisible. From there, we will help determine the net market value of the property, i.e., market value less the amount of any encumbrance. Lastly, the property will be distributed to the parties equitably, in accordance with the statutory factors and purpose.