When parties separate and one party owes debt on student loans, it is not unusual for the parties to disagree as to whether the student loan debt is the sole and separate debt of the party who incurred it, or marital debt that is subject to division between the parties as part of the equitable distribution process. Whether student loan debt is classified as marital debt or separate debt will depend on whether the party who incurred the debt can carry his/her burden of proving that the debt was incurred for the joint benefit of the parties.
A prenuptial agreement (also known as a premarital agreement) is an agreement entered into between two parties who are planning to be married. In order to be legal and binding, a prenuptial agreement must be entered into and signed by both parties before the marriage. However, parties who are already married can take advantage of some of the benefits of a prenuptial agreement by entering into an agreement known as a “postnuptial agreement.”
There are many websites that offer online forms designed to enable spouses to prepare a separation agreement without the assistance of an attorney. However, signing a separation agreement without first reviewing and discussing it with an experienced family law attorney can leave you exposed to unintended financial and legal consequences.
One of the critical steps in the equitable distribution process is to place a value on all property classified as marital property. In North Carolina, all marital property (which includes assets and debts) must be valued as of the date of separation.
There are no legal guidelines in North Carolina that specify how long you should be separated from your spouse before you begin dating. Some people may feel lonely and want to start dating soon after separation while others have difficulty accepting that their marriage is over or otherwise have no interest in getting involved in a new romantic relationship.
Under North Carolina’s equitable distribution laws, all marital property must...