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How Property is Divided After a Divorce in Illinois
The state of Illinois is a equitable division state when it comes to division of marital property. This means that property is divided equitably but not always equally. In some cases Judges may make the decision to distribute a certain percentage of the property to each spouse that could be compromised of personal property, debts or assets that make up the percentage.
Marital Property vs Non-Marital Property
The Court must first determine whether property is marital or non-marital property. All property owned by the parties is presumed to be marital property, however, this presumption can be rebutted by showing that property was acquired prior to the marriage, by gift, or by inheritance, in which case it will be deemed to be nonmarital property. The nonmarital property belongs to the owner.
Marital property is to be divided equitably or fairly between the parties. If nonmarital property is commingled with marital property, it loses its identity and is then deemed marital property. The Court may reimburse a party for nonmarital property transmuted into marital property under special circumstances. Similarly, debts are allocated equitably or fairly amongst the parties. This is often dependent upon income and relative ability to pay. These nuances in how property and debts are divided is, again, where equitable division state rules come into play.
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