What is legally mine in the division of assestsafter a 20 year marriage?

UPDATED: Jun 16, 2011

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What is legally mine in the division of assestsafter a 20 year marriage?

My husband has lived away from the home for 2 1/2 years due to his job. He has made a summer cottage into his primary residence and comes home on the weekends occasionally, and is now refusing to pay the mortgage where I reside because our daughter turned 18 and just graduated high school (he doesn’t want to have this house). Originally the plan was for me to move there with him, but now he says no he wants a divorce. Am I entitled to 401K? Health insurance? Proceeds from the house sale? How about his other residence? Vehicles?

Asked on June 16, 2011 under Family Law, North Carolina


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

I am so sorry for your situation.  It sounds as if it has come as a surprise to you.  North Carolina divides marital property by a method known as equitable distribution. Marital property is defined as all assets acquired during the marriage and prior to separation.  Separation is generally a date certain and LEGAL separation.  So the last 2 and a half years may not count if your husband was still returning home and acting married.  Now, is the cottage property that you bought during the marriage?  Then it is assumed to be your as well.  And yes, arguably you are entitled to part of the 401K, vehicles, bank accounts, etc.   Health insurance may not continue after divorce can can be part of an agreement.  seek legal help here.  Good luck.  

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