Things to know about property division in a Pennsylvania divorce

Property division can be one of the most complicated aspects of a divorce, especially if there are complex assets to consider or the spouses have been married for a long period of time. In Pennsylvania, marital property is divided based on the rule of equitable distribution, which does not necessarily guarantee a split down the middle.

Equitable division of property often requires answering the following questions:

  • When did the spouses separate, and were assets acquired by either spouse after the separation? Assets acquired after separation are generally considered separate property, which is generally not subject to division in a divorce settlement.
  • Did you or your spouse acquire any assets prior to the marriage? If so, then those assets may be categorized as separate property also.
  • Were items that were once separate property ever co-mingled with marital property? If so, then the co-mingling may affect how the property will be divided.

The increase in value of property acquired before the marriage may also be subject to property division. Following is a list of some of the kinds of property that can be equitably distributed to divorcing spouses:

  • 401(k)s, IRAs and pensions
  • Closely held family businesses
  • Real estate
  • Stock options
  • Automobiles
  • Home furnishings
  • Artwork and other personal property

The divorce lawyers of Bononi & Company know how much a divorce settlement can affect an individual’s future. To ensure that clients are able to recoup investments in their marriages, it is often necessary to work with outside experts such as investigators and forensic accountants. Marital property lawyer Eric Bononi is also a certified public accountant with experience in developing plans for dealing with closely held family businesses in divorce proceedings in and out of court.