Dividing marital property can be a challenging part of the divorce process. If you live in Louisiana, you and your spouse must split assets and debts equally according to the state’s community property laws.
Review these Louisiana property division considerations before negotiating a final divorce agreement if your marriage is ending.
You and your spouse can come up with your own settlement agreement for property division, either independently or with the help of a mediator. Before issuing your final divorce decree, the judge will review the agreement to ensure it treats both parties fairly. You can also establish property division terms in a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement.
The terms of a settlement agreement can be flexible. For example, you can agree to pay your spouse the cash value of certain assets you want to keep. Conversely, you may decide to continue co-ownership of real estate or other assets.
Factors in court-based division
If you and your spouse cannot agree on marital property division, you can ask the court to decide during your divorce proceedings. In this case, the judge will consider your child custody arrangement, whether either of you will receive spousal support, each person’s physical and mental health, the work history and earning ability of each party, and the finances of each person.
Generally, community property includes anything acquired by either of you during the marriage, except for gifts or inheritances received by only one person. In long marriages, separate assets may become community property as both spouses contribute to their upkeep or increase in value.