When going through a divorce, it is important to have a good understanding of how assets are divided in your state. This is because there are differences regarding how assets are divided depending on the state of your residence. In Kentucky, community property is not recognized. This means that the legal theory of equitable distribution is used to determine how marital assets are divided in divorce.
When a state follows the theory of equitable distribution, it follows common law when defining marital assets. This is significant because only property that is defined as a marital asset will be subject to division.
What types of assets count as marital property in Kentucky?
Any property that is owned by either spouse before the marriage will be counted as separate property. This means that if you owned a home before you got married, the equity in this property will not be considered marital property and therefore will not be subject to division. However, that could change if your spouse contributed to improvements on the property or other instances.
The majority of assets that were acquired during the marriage will likely be considered as marital property — homes bought together, furniture, cars and artwork.
However, some types of assets will not be counted as marital property. Inheritances and gifts made to one spouse will remain solely theirs unless there was commingling of the asset with marital assets. For example, if one spouse receives a watch as a gift from their parent, this will not be subject to division in a divorce.
The way that assets are categorized can have a huge impact on the asset division process. This is why it is important to ensure that you correctly identify marital assets.