Maryland Asset Division Attorney

Maryland Asset Division Attorney

Maryland Asset Division Lawyer

Dividing Marital Assets in Maryland

Seek Exceptional Legal Guidance for Your Asset Division Case

Working through the equitable distribution of assets during a divorce can be a complicated and emotionally charged situation. This process often includes a broad range of assets, from sentimental keepsakes to substantial financial holdings. We offer the following information to assist you in comprehending how assets are distributed in accordance with Maryland law. If you need further assistance, please contact us to schedule your consultation.

Defining Marital Assets in Maryland

In Maryland, marital property includes assets and possessions acquired by either spouse during the marriage, irrespective of ownership status. Maryland state law mandates that all marital property undergo fair and equitable distribution during divorce proceedings. This process involves dividing a wide range of assets, including:

  • Motor vehicles such as cars, boats, motorcycles, ATVs, and recreational vehicles.
  • Real estate, including primary residences, vacation homes, rental properties, and timeshares.
  • Financial assets, including bank accounts, investment portfolios, precious metals, cryptocurrency, and brokerage accounts.
  • Personal possessions, collectibles, and firearms.
  • Intellectual property rights.
  • Ownership interests in family businesses.

Maryland’s Approach to Marital Asset Division

Maryland operates under an “equitable distribution” model, granting divorce judges the discretion to allocate assets in a manner they deem fair within the given circumstances rather than mandating an equal split. In practice, this often results in a roughly equal division of property. Maryland’s asset division laws outline the following key steps for judges:

  1. Property classification into marital, non-marital, or family use personal property.
  2. Valuation of each asset.
  3. Application of fairness principles to guide the property division process.

Distinguishing between marital and non-marital property is essential. Non-marital property, also known as separate property, falls under one of these criteria:

  1. Acquisition before the marriage (e.g., retirement benefits from a pre-marital job).
  2. Receipt through gifts or inheritance, even while married.
  3. Exemption by virtue of a valid prenuptial agreement, post-nuptial agreement, or other legally binding contract.
  4. Directly traceable to any of the above categories (e.g., a boat purchased and maintained with inherited funds).

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Property may also exhibit characteristics of both marital and separate property. For example, if one spouse bought a house before the marriage, yet marital funds were used to cover the mortgage while married, the non-owner spouse could be entitled to a fair share of the property’s increased value.

Treatment of Marital Assets in Maryland

In Maryland, divorce courts generally cannot transfer property titles or allocate debts to individuals not party to the lending contract. Consequently, each party remains responsible for debts in their name, even if incurred for the family’s benefit. The party named on the mortgage or car loan typically retains the related property. The court may consider debt allocation in the equitable division of marital property and any monetary awards aimed at offsetting family-related debts or property values held solely by one party.

Family Use Personal Property and Family Home

To provide stability for children, Maryland judges can designate specific property as “family use personal property” or a “family home,” granting exclusive use and possession to the custodial spouse for up to three years. In certain cases, this arrangement may mean one party bears the family home’s mortgage while the other party and children continue to reside there.

Factors Influencing Equitable Division

The court examines numerous factors to reach a fair property division, including:

  • Monetary and non-monetary contributions by each party.
  • The value of each party’s property interests.
  • Economic circumstances of each party during the divorce.
  • Causes for the marital breakdown.
  • Marriage duration.
  • The parties’ ages and physical/mental well-being.
  • Acquisition and ownership of retirement assets and family use personal property.
  • Contributions to jointly held real property, such as the marital home.
  • Alimony awards, family use personal property or family home awards.
  • Other relevant factors at the court’s discretion.

Should your divorce case go to trial, the court applies these factors to determine an equitable property division, which may not always align with the parties’ perception of fairness.

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Speak to Our Maryland Asset Division Attorneys

Asset division complexities, especially with assets of uncertain values or disputes over marital or separate property status, necessitate experienced legal guidance. The Law Offices of Sandra Guzman Salvado, staffed by seasoned Maryland marital asset division attorneys, provide exceptional legal support to clients in Montgomery, Frederick, Prince George’s, Anne Arundel, and Howard counties. With offices strategically located in Bethesda, Frederick, Greenbelt, and Rockville, Maryland, we ensure convenient and accessible legal representation.

For further information about marital asset division in Maryland, contact our Maryland family law attorneys at the Law Offices of Sandra Guzman Salvado at (301) 340-1911.


Call Now To Discuss Your Options (301) 340-1911

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    Call Now To Discuss Your Options (301) 340-1911

    Office Locations

    11 North Washington St. Ste 500 Rockville, MD 20850
    6301 Ivy Lane
    Ste 700 Greenbelt, MD 20770
    3 Bethesda Metro Center, Suite 700 Bethesda, MD 20814
    5100 Buckeystown Pike Ste 250 Frederick, MD 21704