Divorce can get heated and often one spouse will attempt to over reach. The problem is how do we know when someone is over reaching when it comes to property? Colorado has developed a distinction between marital property and property that belongs to a single spouse.
Marital property means all property acquired by either spouse after the marriage, except:
• Property acquired by gift, bequest, devise, or descent;
• Property acquired in exchange for property acquired prior to the marriage or in exchange for property acquired by gift, bequest, devise, or descent;
• Property acquired by a spouse after a decree of legal separation; and
• Property excluded by valid agreement of the parties
Everything that is brought in before the marriage will be considered that spouse’s personal property in the divorce.
Although you may want to take the high road and allow your spouse to take ownership of items that are marital property you should consider the big picture. In a divorce people are essentially dividing their life together. The hope is that each spouse will receive an equitable share of the property. Marital property doesn’t just have monetary value, but it also has emotional value. It is important to have an advocate on your side that can assist you in making the best decision for your financial and emotional wellbeing.
After the Court has figured out what is marital property and what is not it will then divide the property. The court will divide the marital property, without regard to marital misconduct in such a way the court deems just after considering certain factors. These factors are as follows:
• The contribution of each spouse to the acquisition of the marital property, including the contribution of a spouse as homemaker;
• The value of the property set apart to each spouse;
• The economic circumstances of each spouse at the time of the division of the property;
• Any increases or decreases in the value of the separate property of the spouse during the marriage or the depletion of the separate property for marital purposes.