When Connecticut spouses divorce, their marital property and debt is often divided by mutual agreement. However, when an agreement cannot be reached, the property is divided by order of the Superior Court. Such orders are typically issued as part of a decree resolving the marriage.
As is the case in a majority of states, Connecticut follows the principle of equitable distribution. This means that when a court is tasked with ordering the division of marital property, it does not necessarily divide it equally but rather in whatever way the court considers to be fair. To arrive at that determination, the court will go through a discovery process to determine what property and debt is considered marital and what value to place on the property. The court will then consider certain factors that may affect the division.
In determining what is fair, the court will look at such things as the length of the marriage, the age, health and occupation of each party and the reason for the dissolution of the marriage, annulment or legal separation. Additionally, the court may consider future employability, additional sources of income and the liabilities and needs of each party. The court may also consider the contribution of each party toward the acquisition, preservation and growth of separate property.
A person going through a divorce needs to protect their interests in marital property in order to secure their financial future. To do this, a person must ensure that all property is included and properly valued, regardless of whether the property division will be by agreement or court order. Anyone needing help with this may want to secure the services of an attorney who has experience in family law matters.
Source: Divorce Support, "Connecticut Property Division Factors", September 10, 2014