Yours, Mine, and Ours? Understanding Divorce and Property Division in Minnesota

The law on disposition of property through divorce can be perplexing. Minnesota law defines several categories of property ownership for the purpose of marriage dissolution, including marital, non-marital, partially marital, and partially non-marital. Confused? Don't be. Our St. Paul property division lawyers can help you work through the ambiguity.

The underlying tenet of Minnesota law is that marriage is a full partnership. Therefore, you and your partner are joint owners of everything you acquired while you were together. However, it's not as black and white as it may seem. Here are some high-level guidelines used in determining property division:

  • Marital property is anything of value that you gained during your marriage. It includes property such as cash, real estate, pensions, and retirement investments. It's important to note, however, that marital property may not always result in a 50-50 split. The court ultimately determines what is just and equitable.
  • Non-Marital property refers to anything you owned before you were married and gifts/inheritance that another person gave to you directly. The court may ask you for proof of ownership on these items.
  • Partially Marital and Partially Non-Marital property refers to something you purchased, began to pay for before you were married, and continued with the payments after your marriage. For example, maybe you bought a car or a house and made payments on it before you were married. After you married, you continued making payments.

If you decide to pursue a dissolution of marriage, don't go it alone. You'll need knowledgeable help from an attorney familiar with Minnesota property division law to ensure you get an equitable settlement, especially when it comes to dividing your property. Make a call to Bowden Cyr, PLLC. Their 40 years of combined experience makes all the difference.