When you file for divorce in New York, one of your first questions to your attorney might be “What will I get in the divorce?” Unfortunately, it's hard to say right away. If you didn't sign a prenup, dividing up you and your former spouse's assets might take months. It's impossible to know what you'll get ahead of time, but there are a few things you can keep in mind during the divorce trial.
What assets are you entitled to during a divorce?
According to family law, nearly everything you accumulate during your marriage is considered marital property. That means it must be divided up, regardless of who paid for it. For example, if your former spouse bought a car with their own money and has their name on the title, you're still entitled to half that vehicle's value.
Any debts that you and your former spouse accumulated during your marriage are also marital property. If your spouse is still making a car payment, you could be stuck with half of their debt. Your attorney might help you negotiate so that you deal with as few debts as possible.
A court may divide up houses and properties during your divorce, as well as any vehicles, businesses and empty lots that you own. You should also prepare to divide up your savings account and retirement fund. Stocks, investments and even life insurance policies might also be up for grabs.
When will you know exactly what you're getting?
In most cases, you won't know exactly what you're getting until finalizing the divorce. You might have to give up some of your assets, but an attorney may help you compromise so that you can keep some of your most important properties. Keep in mind that you're also entitled to a share of your former spouse's assets.