While some couples in Florida going through a divorce find that they are able to reach a consensus about how to divide their marital property, others may find that some items have such financial or sentimental value that both parties are reluctant to give them up. When this happens, the parties may need to turn to the court to issue an order regarding property division.
When dividing property in a divorce, Florida courts will aim to issue an equal distribution of property between the spouses, unless there is a good reason based on the following factors to award one party a greater percentage of the property than the other party.
One factor the court may consider is what each party contributed to the household during the marriage, especially if one party stayed at home and out of the workforce to care for the family. Each party's financial circumstances may also be considered, as may how long the marriage lasted. Another factor is whether a party's career or education was interrupted for some reason, or whether one party contributed to furthering the education or career of the other party.
In addition, a court may consider the wishes of a party to keep an asset such as a business in which the other party does not have an interest. What each party contributed to the acquisition or improvement of both marital and nonmarital assets may be considered. If there are children involved, the desirability of letting the custodial parent to keep the family home for the children to be raised in may also be considered. Whether any party purposely wasted or destroyed property after the filing of the divorce or within the previous 24 months to that filing may be considered. Finally, the court will consider any other factors needed to obtain a fair distribution of property.
As this shows, there is much to be considered when dividing property in Florida. In the end, however, it is important that whatever result is reached is both fair and appropriate to both parties.