“Equitable Distribution” in North Carolina
When facing a separation, and you and your spouse own property together (either a house, cars, a business, investments, etc), the division is based on how the shared property is classified: it will either be considered “marital” (subject to division, bought during the marriage), separate (you or your spouse owned it on your own before the marriage) or divisible (acquired after your separated but you are still married).
Marital property includes all property acquired by either of you during the marriage, regardless of who holds legal title to the property. Subject to division
Separate property includes property acquired by either spouse prior to the marriage or property that is inherited or gifted to one spouse during the marriage. Not subject to division.
Divisible property includes property accumulated by either spouse during the marriage but after the date of separation.
The date of marriage and the date of separation are especially important with regard to equitably distribution because those dates are used to delineate which property is considered marital property and which property is considered separate property. Property distribution can be a complex issue, and it is important to consult with a family law attorney to ensure that your rights are protected.