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Keep property division goals realistic

Regardless of how long a couple was married before filing for divorce, there is one thing they will all have to deal with — dividing up the marital property. This is true whether a Massachusetts couple said “I do” two years ago or 20. Although property division might seem straightforward, many people soon realize just how complicated the matter can be.

People often assume that they will maintain their current lifestyle regardless of their marital status. However, going into property division with this attitude is shortsighted. Whether a marriage was dual-income or relied heavily on financial support from one person, it is understandable that things will change. This shift in finances will impact which assets individuals should realistically keep, which they should let go to their exes and which should be sold.

The home is a prime example. Marital homes often hold significant emotional value, which does not have a price tag. But how will a change in financial status affect a person’s ability to stay in the home? There are property taxes and upkeep to consider on top of the monthly mortgage. Divorcees should measure these costs against their expected financial status after divorce and make a decision based on that information rather than emotional ties.

It is easy to base property division on the way that things currently stand rather than how they will likely play out in the future. However, doing so is shortsighted and can lead to financial instability. Instead, divorcing couples in Massachusetts should be certain that they both understand the future financial implications of divorce, dividing property and any related payments they may be ordered to pay.

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