Separating items

Sadly, if there are items in question and you two are fighting over them, this is where having the money to take it to court comes in. If you do not have the money to hire an attorney you must decide whether or not it is worth fighting over. This is where that part comes in about “picking your battles”.
If there are children involved, you and your stbx could be in for a very rough time if you do not soon resolve some of the issues. If you are fighting over material things, I can only imagine what the issues with the children will be.

If you have an agreement that does not specifically state what is who’s then you must either agree or take it to court. If the person in the marital home does not wish to “give up” the items in question, and the agreement does not specify it will have to be taken further. If it goes to court I believe that it will be assumed to be marital property and therefore divisible.

unfortunately for me, I can’t change what is. Picking battles is easy to say, but when you can’t control the other party you must do what you have to do. I am looking for straight answers. Don’t need a guilt trip. I have been through enough already. IF you don’t know someones situation 100%, please just give straight answer. I appreciate the information to my questions. They are very helpful. Things are tough enough without feeling I need to defend myself on the “Attorneys will respond” forum

Hi stressedmom,

I think stepmother responded well. I understand the stress you are under.

To answer your questions directly…

Yes property brought into the marriage is typically the property of the person that brought it into the marriage unless the property increased in value then the spouse is entitled to half the increase in the value of the property since the start of the marriage.

If there are questions about if the property belonged to you before the marriage and you cannot agree then you have the right to take it to court.

If a piece of property was omitted from the separation agreement then it typically considered “marital” and will be divided via the court system. Items that can’t be “divided” would have to be sold. A car for instance. If you had a car you purchesd during the marriage your spouse would be entitled to half the value. If you owe more on the care than it is worth he would be entitled to half the debt too.

If you have executed a separation agreement and failed to deal with personal property issues, you may be stuck. In that case you may each be in a position of keeping what is in your possession.

P.S. Please feel free to bring up this or any other topic on our live call-in show every Wednesday at 11:00 a.m. EST. Visit for details

Helena M. Nevicosi
Attorney with Rosen Law Firm

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The response posted above is based upon the limited factual information made available and is not intended as a full and complete response to the question. The only reliable manner to obtain complete and adequate legal advice is to consult with an attorney, fully explain your situation, and allow the attorney sufficient opportunity to research the applicable law and facts required to render an accurate opinion. The basic information provided above is intended as a public service only, a full discussion with an attorney should be undertaken before taking any action. The information posted on this forum is available for public viewing and is not intended to create an attorney client relationship with any individual. These answers are provided for informational purposes only, a person should consult with their own individual legal counsel before taking any action that could affect their legal rights or obligations.

If there is not anything stated in separation agreement, how do you divide items. Are premarital items considered marital property once you bring them into the marriage? What if you can’t prove what was yours or remember it it was a before or after marriage purchase. Marriage is under 7yrs. thanks