Equitable Distribution

Definition - What does Equitable Distribution mean?

Equitable distribution is one of the methods used by courts to distribute property and debt obligations between spouses at the time of their divorce. It does not signify a fifty-fifty split. Instead, it refers to a fair distribution. The fair distribution is decided by a judge after taking many factors into consideration such as the earning capacity of each spouse, length of marriage, and standard of living.

Justipedia explains Equitable Distribution

There are two legal doctrines followed in the United States for the division of property and debt obligations between a couple after the dissolution of their marriage: community property and equitable distribution. While community property gives both spouses joint ownership, equitable distribution divides the property in a ratio that the court decides. A judge takes a lot of aspects into account before distributing the property. Equitable distribution laws apply only when a divorcing couple can’t reach an agreement over the distribution of their property and obligations. In the United States, every state has adopted equitable distribution laws with the exception of Nevada, Louisiana, New Mexico, Idaho, Texas, Arizona, Washington, Wisconsin, and California.
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