By Robin Roshkind, Esquire, West Palm Beach, Florida
Everyone going through a divorce in the State of Florida hears from their lawyers that assets and debts of the marriage have to be equitably divided.
What exactly does that mean? “Equitable” distribution does not necessarily mean “equal”. Divorce court in Florida is a court of equity, meaning “fairness”. So if a husband has a gambling addiction, the wife should not also suffer in divorce by receiving exactly one half of what is left, since the husband already squandered a portion of the marital estate during the marriage. His “dissipation” of marital assets will be considered and the wife may receive more than one half of what is left to achieve “fairness” or “equitable” distribution of the remaining assets.
“Partial equitable distribution” is another theme in divorce court, where the parties have many assets of the marriage. One or both spouses ask the court for a partial division of the assets pending the end result, to allow the parties to purchase another separate residence, or to pay the divorce lawyers fees.
Usually where a married couple has more than just a home and car, there is more to fight over, so parties should follow the advice of counsel when considering temporary or partial agreements. For more information about this or other divorce topics, call one of the attorneys at ROBIN ROSHKIND, P.A. at 561-835-9091 or click on the Firm’s web site at www.familylawwpb.com.