Topics in Calgary Divorce: Matrimonial Property Division
July 7, 2016
As one of Calgary's leading family law and divorce law firms, we here at GDE Family Law believe we have a duty to our clients—and every citizen of Calgary—to ensure the availability of accurate and comprehensive legal information to anyone in need of it. With reliable and current information, you can make better decisions when it comes to protecting your rights and interests during legal proceedings such as a divorce.
For many in Calgary going through a divorce, the issue of splitting up property is one of the most important considerations. For emotional, financial, and other practical reasons, ownership of a primary residence and other real estate as well as other valuable property can significantly impact your future following a divorce. That is why matrimonial property division is one of the most frequent sources for disagreements during Calgary divorces.
Some of these disagreements could potentially be avoided if Calgary's citizens were better informed about the general principle of the law concerning matrimonial property divisions—the splitting of property between ex-spouses during a divorce. Canada's divorce laws establish a clear guideline for judges to use when dividing property between the individuals involved in a divorce. If you and your former spouse cannot come to a fair agreement regarding your jointly-owned property with the help of your divorce lawyer and a mediator or Alternative Dispute Resolution facilitator, a judge will make the agreement for you based on the law.
The Calgary Courts Try to Split Property Equally in a Divorce
The law and the Courts view a marriage as an equal partnership between the two spouses. Any property acquired by the partnership, that is, by the married couple, is considered jointly and equally owned between the two partners. When a marriage ends, the law treats jointly owned property like it would in any other partnership, and says that the property should be equally split among the two former partners.
Of course, this is often more complicated than it sounds, especially in a divorce. Not only is it impossible to "split" most property—you can't effectively own and control half of a house while someone else owns and controls the other half, for instance—but other factors in a divorce can impact what is considered an "equal split" in the eyes of the Calgary Courts. The split of other assets like investment accounts, child custody agreements, and spousal support can all affect matrimonial property division outcomes.
The home you shared with your former partner, also known as the "matrimonial home," has special considerations as well. In some divorce cases, the home is sold and the proceeds are split between the two former spouses. In other cases, one person might keep the matrimonial home while the other receives a larger share of other property and/or assets to balance things out.
Contact a Calgary Divorce Lawyer Today
What the law determines to be fair and what Calgary citizens think is fair are not always the same. To get a better understanding of your specific case and how you might be affected by a matrimonial property division decision, contact an experienced Calgary divorce lawyer today.
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