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Dividing property in a divorce isn’t always a big deal for couples, especially those with few assets and who are renting. Couples who don’t own real estate together may divide property simply by each taking their own personal effects and perhaps divvying up the furniture, or selling it and dividing the proceeds equally. However things get more complicated when the couple owns real estate property together. The couple must decide how the marital home, as well as any rental properties the couple owns together, will be split. Consider the following overview of how property, including rental property, is divided in a divorce.

Equitable Division in Illinois

The law in Illinois requires couples divide marital property–that is, any property acquired during the course of the marriage by either spouse–in a manner that is equitable, but not necessarily equal. Couples are highly encouraged by the court to work together to reach a property division arrangement, as this gives the couple more autonomy in making a decision and is also less expensive and faster. However, in the event the couple cannot decide how to divide property, the court will intervene. If the court makes a decision, the decision will be based on a number of factors, including the existence of a premarital agreement, the length of the marriage, each spouse’s liabilities, the economic circumstances of each spouse and more. Rental Property Division Options

There are a few different ways in which rental property in a divorce may be divided between spouses. These options include:

  • The rental property is appraised and sold and both spouses split the proceeds equally;
  • One spouse “buys out” their half of the rental property, providing the other spouse with full ownership;
  • The couple decides to retain joint ownership of the property, splitting any rental income 50/50; or
  • One party to the marriage retains the rental property in exchange for something else, such as the marital home.

Getting What You Want Out of Divorce

Getting what you want out of a divorce can be complicated, especially if you and your spouse are hostile with one another and unable to reach a compromise. When you are dividing rental property, as well as negotiating other terms of your divorce, it’s wise to keep a cool head, to clearly articulate what you want and why–and to be willing to compromise. Of course, you should also retain legal counsel, who can represent your best interests and present your case to a court should out-of-court resolution prove impossible.

Our Lawyers Can Help

At the law office of Fay, Farrow & Associates, P.C., our divorce and family law lawyers know how complicated property division disputes in a divorce can be. When you call us, we’ll work hard to represent you and protect your interests. We serve clients in Naperville, Wheaton, Downers Grove, Lisle, Lombard, Aurora and other areas of Illinois. We are ready to sit down to discuss your case today. Please call us for your initial consultation or contact us online at your convenience.