When a couple chooses to divorce, they know that many aspects and decisions will have to be considered when going through the process. Dealing with child custody and property division are just two categories that they may have to delve into as part of their separation. What they may not consider, however, is how their location could play a role in their divorce. It is important to understand that divorce laws vary from state to state, and depending on where a couple lives, their process could be vastly different from another couple's.
Divorce location can play a significant role in property division as most states fall into one of two categories: community property and equitable distribution states. If a state is follows community property rules, like Washington, then marital property is divided in half between the two parties. Personal situations, such as income or age, are not considered when a judge decides which party ends up with what property. Some may see this process as unfair because they may believe they are more entitled to certain property than the other party.
States that follow equitable distribution rules when dividing marital property have a more complicated approach. Judges may consider which party may be more likely to have better job prospects or if one party gave up certain opportunities to stay home with children. The distribution may not be divided equally but possibly on an as-needed basis determined by the court.
As property division and other divorce proceedings differ depending on location, it is important for people contemplating separation to understand what the process may entail in their case. If they live in a state where the division process may not fit their tastes, they may wish to look into other routes, including attempting to negotiate one-on-one with a spouse. However, having a better understanding of Washington state laws regarding divorce and property division could be beneficial.