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Understanding Property Ownership and Division in Marriage and Divorce in Illinois

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Understanding Property Ownership and Division in Marriage and Divorce in Illinois
Published
February 13, 2024
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dpinkston@pinkstonlawgroup.com
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When couples enter into marriage, they often bring with them individual assets and, over time, accumulate property together. In Illinois, the law has specific guidelines for how property is owned within a marriage and how it is divided in the event of a divorce. Pinkston Law Group, P.C. specializes in guiding clients through the complexities of marital property law to ensure fair and equitable outcomes.

Types of Property in Illinois Marriages

In Illinois, property owned by married couples falls into two main categories: marital property and non-marital property.

  • Marital Property: This includes most assets and debts acquired by either spouse during the marriage, regardless of whose name is on the title. Examples include homes purchased after the wedding, vehicles, furniture, and income earned by either spouse.
  • Non-Marital Property: This consists of assets acquired by either spouse before the marriage, gifts, and inheritances received individually, and property acquired after a legal separation. Additionally, property can be deemed non-marital if both parties have agreed on a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement.

Property Division During Divorce in Illinois

Illinois is an “equitable distribution” state, meaning that marital property is not necessarily divided equally but rather in a manner that the court deems fair based on various factors. These factors include but are not limited to:

  • The duration of the marriage
  • Each spouse’s contribution to the marital estate
  • The economic circumstances of each spouse
  • Any obligations from prior marriages
  • The age, health, and needs of each spouse
  • Custodial provisions for children

The court takes these factors into account to ensure that the division of property is equitable and considers the future financial stability of both parties. It’s important to note that “equitable” does not always mean a 50/50 split; it means what is considered fair by the court.

Non-Marital Property Considerations

Non-marital property is generally awarded to the spouse who owns it. However, the division can become complicated if non-marital property has been commingled with marital property. For example, if one spouse enters the marriage owning a home but both spouses contribute to the mortgage or renovations during the marriage, the home may be considered marital property.

Call to Action

Navigating the division of property during a divorce can be complex and emotionally taxing. At Pinkston Law Group, P.C., our team is dedicated to providing compassionate and competent legal representation to protect your interests. Whether you’re dealing with the division of marital assets or concerns about protecting your non-marital property, we’re here to help.

If you’re going through a divorce in Illinois or contemplating one, it’s crucial to understand your rights and the intricacies of property division. Contact Pinkston Law Group, P.C. today for a consultation. Our experienced attorneys will work with you to develop a strategy tailored to your unique situation, aiming for an outcome that ensures your financial security and peace of mind. Let us help you navigate this challenging time with the expertise and support you deserve.

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