Your assets will be on the table once your divorce begins. It could all be counted, classified and valued, so make sure you come prepared for the process to unfold. If you’re not ready, it could cost you more than you think.

Minnesota will look to divide your assets fairly in the divorce, but that doesn’t have to mean evenly. The courts will look at a range of factors, from the length of your marriage to employability. And the courts can start assigning temporary awards right out of the gate, so it’s best to enter the process with an understanding of how they can handle every piece.

Drafting an outline

Going into any proceedings without doing your research could end up costing you:

  • Determine assignments: Look through your holdings, and figure out what might count as marital property. You may have to state your case for separate assets, especially when there’s a chance of commingling. Just because things started in separate piles, growth over time, spousal contributions and application to the household can change their classification.
  • Find values: You’ll want to get an idea of how much it’s all worth before the courts take their turn. You don’t want any surprises, and it can be in your interest to have a number for everything in case things don’t look right upon reveal. This can also ensure you’re prepared for the division of less tangible assets like retirement benefits, investments and even a share of your business.
  • Prepare your case: Even if you’re headed for mediation first, that doesn’t mean you can come unprepared. While you do have some privacy from the outside world in mediation, your spouse will still have a chance to see your hand early if you do eventually head to court. Make sure you have a game plan in place before you ever initiate the process.

Understanding how the court can treat your assets is crucial before you begin the divorce process. Doing your homework could be the difference when it comes to getting your fair share.