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Determining the division of assets in a South Carolina divorce

In South Carolina, as in most other states, property is to be divided between spouses equitably. The equitable division of assets means that marital property should be divided fairly, which does not necessarily mean equally. Below you will find more information about what the state's equitable distribution law could mean to you.

The law that governs property distribution in the state can be found in the South Carolina Code of Laws, Chapter 3, Article 5. According to Article 5, the distribution of marital property shall be determined based on several factors. The first of these factors is the length of the marriage, along with the ages of the spouses at the beginning and end of their marriage.

Another factor that a family court will consider is marital misconduct by either party, regardless of whether the misconduct was cited as a ground for divorce, but rather if the misconduct had economic effects. Additionally, the court will take permanently ordered spousal support into consideration, along with the current and projected future incomes of each spouse. The court will also consider the health of both spouses and whether one or both need additional education to improve their individual economic outlooks.

Finally, a South Carolina court will consider the value of the marital property itself, along with the contributions each spouse made toward its acquisition and maintenance, when determining the division of assets. This consideration will include acknowledgements of contributions made by homemakers to ensure stay-at-home parents do not suffer unfairly. Once a court has weighed all the factors, only then will its judge determine the equitable distribution of a couple's property.

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