Nonmonetary assets and how they can complicate a divorce

On Behalf of | Sep 19, 2023 | Divorce

The concepts of non-monetary contributions, overall contributions and achieving a fair split can make a divorce more complex. Still, they are essential considerations in the equitable distribution of marital assets.

While ensuring a fair split of assets and debts, non-monetary contributions can make an otherwise easy divorce more difficult; it is important to understand what a non-monetary contribution is, how the courts view them and how they increase the complexity of a divorce.

What are non-monetary contributions?

Non-monetary contributions, such as household chores, childcare and homemaking, are a consideration in divorce cases in Arkansas. The expectation is not to complicate the divorce process but rather contribute to a fair assessment of each spouse’s role in the marriage.

Why do courts recognize overall contributions to the marriage?

Recognizing monetary and non-monetary contributions creates a more holistic view of the marriage. It aims to acknowledge that each spouse’s role is valuable, whether it involves earning income or maintaining the home and caring for children.

What is the goal of a fair split?

The goal of achieving a fair split in divorce is to ensure that neither spouse is at a disadvantage in the division of marital assets and debts.

How do these factors make a divorce more complex?

The divorce rate in Arkansas is the highest in the United States, with around 3.6 per 1,000 people, which is approximately 10% per 1,000 marriages, according to the Centers for Disease Control. Many divorces are not very complicated. Complications arise when there are disagreements or disputes related to these factors:

  • Disagreements over the valuation of non-monetary contributions such as housekeeping and childcare.
  • When spouses have varying opinions on what to consider “fair” division based on their individual contributions.

Although there are other disagreements in fairness, these are two of the main non-monetary reasons.

The courts encourage couples to communicate about their contributions before entering the courtroom to make the proceedings less complex.