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Interim Distribution

When a Waxhaw relationship goes south and one or both people involved are ready to make a change in the dynamics of the relationship, sometimes one of the parties has access to a majority of the couple’s resources and is more financially secure than the other. These resources can come in a variety of ways. They may include having their name titled on the mortgage, deed, and/or lease of real property; the car loan; being the primary earner; or having access to accounts with liquid cash and other assets.

When One Party is at a Financial Disadvantage

When there is such an uneven distribution of resources in a Waxhaw marriage or other relationship, one party is at a significant disadvantage during a separation. Not only is this person having to process the changes in relationship status, but he or she also has to find a new place to live, address his or her transportation needs, and deal with new financial burdens as a result.

For Waxhaw couples that have started the process of divorce, the preexisting uneven distribution of financial resources also impacts the ability of one party to be able to hire legal counsel while dealing with other financial issues. Seeing this common issue, North Carolina’s legislature recognizes how a financial disparity can adversely affect a disadvantaged party. As a result, the law steps in to try to level the playing field through the recourse of interim distribution.

Interim Distribution

After married spouses in Waxhaw legally separate in North Carolina, there is a legal process by which the couple’s assets, including property owned prior to marriage and property acquired during marriage, are divided between them. This legal process is referred to as “equitable distribution.” Of note, “equitable” does not mean “equal.” In other words, the result is often not a 50/50 split of assets. That being said, the parties generally keep their separate property, which is the property each individual owned prior to marriage. Marital property, on the other hand, is all of the property that the couple acquired during the marriage.

Prior to a North Carolina court entering a final order on the equitable distribution of a couple’s property, either party to the proceedings may petition the court to make an interim distribution. Simply put, interim distribution is when a family law court is petitioned by one party to distribute some of the assets to him or her before a final hearing on the distribution of the entirety of the couple’s property has occurred. Of note, in order for a North Carolina family court to make an interim distribution, the petitioning party must show good cause as to why the court should grant his or her request. There are several grounds for requesting an interim distribution in Waxhaw including: financial hardship, not having enough money to survive, or not having a place to live.

Distributive Awards

North Carolina courts may distribute marital and non-marital assets in several ways as a result of a Waxhaw divorce. First, the property distribution could be viewed as a preliminary distribution of the property. This could include assets and debts and would happen prior to a final distribution. On the other hand, a North Carolina family law court may award either party to the divorce a “distributive” award. Essentially, a distributive award is a payment from one party to another in either a one-time lump sum or a set number of payments over time. Any distributive award ordered by the court prior to the final division of property will be taken into consideration at the later hearing for the final distribution.

Family Law Attorneys in Waxhaw

If you or someone you know is going through a separation and one spouse has significant access to the couple’s collective wealth, contact a skilled North Carolina family law attorney right away. At Arnold & Smith, PLLC, our firm has North Carolina board certified family law specialists who have vast experience in these types of issues as well as other matters related to divorce. Contact us today to schedule your initial consultation with one of our attorneys.