Does the entry of a court-ordered equitable distribution create an interest to a retirement asset? Do you even need to file a DRO or QDRO when an equitable distribution consent order is signed by a judge? See how the North Carolina Court of Appeals saves the award of the marital portion of a retirement account that had not been disbursed before the intestate death of the former husband. Continue reading →
Facts: A husband and wife divorced in Ohio. The divorce decree awarded the wife an interest in the husband’s retirement benefits. Continue reading →
Garcia-Tatupu v. Bert Bell/Peter Rozelle NFL Player Ret. Plan, No. CV 16-11131-DPW, F. Supp. 3d , 2017 WL 1398645 (D. Mass. Apr. 18, 2017)
Facts: The husband, a former NFL football player, was divorced from his wife in Massachusetts in 1997. No DRO was entered at the time. The husband died in 2010; he had not remarried. In 2012, the Massachusetts court issued a DRO, nunc pro tunc back to 1997.
Background: There are two ways in which state courts can make a deferred future division of retirement benefits. The traditional method is the shared interest approach, which awards the nonowning spouse a portion of each future payment received by the owning spouse. Continue reading →
Equitable Distribution, in a nutshell, is giving each party to a marriage what they are entitled regarding property acquired during the marriage. As one of the pillars of many divorce proceedings, it is commonly the most complex aspects, requiring extensive research into the lives of individuals going through a divorce. In some instances, the parties to a divorce can amicably agree as to how the property acquired during the marriage shall be distributed, and in some instances where parties fail to agree, distribution may be simple due to the nature, amount, and availability of information regarding marital property. In other instances, the parties cannot agree, and the marital assets are numerous, complex, and difficult to find; this situation can create a very tall task for attorneys in properly representing client interests. Continue reading →
The two big classifications of property in all equitable distribution cases are “marital” and “separate” property. These are the ones the get all the attention and are subject to some of the most intense scrutiny and debate; however, there is a third area of property that is equally as important and can at times, prove to be a valuable player equitable distribution cases. Yes, I am talking about “divisible property!” Continue reading →
A great aspect of living in the triad area is the rich history of successful businesses that put down roots in the community and prospered over the years. Greensboro is home to very familiar brands such as Wrangler and Volvo, and right down the road is High Point, which is known for being one of the largest home furnishing manufacturing areas in the country. Business and industry have been drawn to the area for years, and a growing population provides ample opportunity for entrepreneurs of all sizes to flourish. Some of the area’s most vital businesses are ones defined as “closely-held,” or more commonly referred to as, “Mom and Pop” businesses. Unfortunately, sometimes, Mom and Pop do not see eye-to-eye, which may jeopardize the future of these businesses. Continue reading →
I have a family member who is separated. Before the separation, this person purchased a house with the deed only in her name and the deed of trust in both names. How will the courts view this property for equitable distribution? My family member thinks that since the property is only in her name that the other party has no rights under equitable distribution. Can you explain the difference between Deed and Deed of Trust?
Thanks Continue reading →
My wife and I have been married 20 years. Our child is graduating from high school this year, and we are miserable. We own a home with lots of debt and we cannot afford to separate without selling our home first. We both work, but there simply is not enough money to maintain two households without first selling the house. Is there any way we can declare ourselves separated and maintain the same household until the house sells? Why is the North Carolina waiting period for divorce a year? I hear that one year is a long time as compared to other states. Can we settle our property now? We have retirement, cars and furniture, along with the house?
Timing, as they say, is everything, and if you are appealing an Order in North Carolina, this is particularly true. Slaughter v. Slaughter, No. COA16-1153 was decided by the North Carolina Court of Appeals on July 18, 2017. While there were multiple issues on appeal, the issue that sticks out is the timing and issues allowed on cross-appeal. Continue reading →