Wisconsin is a marital property state. This means that each spouse has a one-half vested interest in all property, debts and income acquired during the marriage by either spouse. Gifted or inherited property are the only exceptions. As such, there is a presumption that all property owned by either spouse at the time of the divorce, including assets and debts brought to the marriage, will be divided equally. Individuals can overcome this presumption with the effective assistance of attorneys. An attorney can articulate persuasive reasons to deviate from an equal property division.
Somewhat intertwined with property division is spousal support, referred to as maintenance (formerly alimony). Unlike child support, there is no formula for calculating maintenance. Courts make the determination whether or not to award maintenance, the amount, and the duration of the payments based on a number of factors. The determination is unique to each situation. In some instances, it may benefit the spouses to agree on a buy-out of maintenance. A buy-out comes in the form of an unequal property division.
At Axley Law Firm, our attorneys have experience and success in advocating for unequal divisions of property when appropriate. We are also proficient in obtaining the best maintenance outcome for our clients. Contact a family law attorney to set up an initial consultation.