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What exactly is equitable distribution?

When you get married, you of course believe that you'll be together forever. But, as much as you hoped and wished for it, sometimes things don't work out. Perhaps you matured differently and your interests diverged or one partner was unfaithful. Whatever the reason, sometimes divorce is the best option for a marriage that is no longer based on love. Of course, the decision to split is just the first step on a long road toward independence from one another.

There are issues of child custody, child support, alimony and property division to work out and no one ever made the claim that any of those things were easy. When it comes to dividing property in divorce, states do it in one of two ways. There are community property states where judges just split all of the assets right down the middle. Then there are equitable distribution states where the couple or the courts come to an agreement over a fair distribution of the assets accumulated during the marriage.

Illinois is an equitable distribution state and here's what that means for you. When you get a divorce here, the courts will take into consideration a number of factors in deciding who gets what. They will base their decisions on things like how long the marriage lasted, the earning power of each spouse and even their ages and potential earning power in the future.

Property division can get extremely complicated, so having an attorney by your side to help you navigate the murky waters may be a good idea.

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Goddard & Malmquist

Goddard & Malmquist
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