Category Archives: Property division

Military retired pay in a Wisconsin divorce

The most valuable asset of a military servicemember in a divorce is often military retired pay.   Servicemembers often have two retirement options:  military retirement (a pension) and the federal Thrift Savings Plan (similar to a 401k).  The TSP is easily divided between spouses because there is a clear account balance.  The division of the […]

Marital Property and Wisconsin Divorce

If you are in the midst of divorce or legal separation in Wisconsin, you have probably heard the phrase, “Wisconsin is a community property state.” This means that, by default, the Wisconsin Court will divide marital property equally between divorcing or separating spouses. Everything you and your spouse own is presumed to be owned by […]

Property Division in Wisconsin Divorce

Many questions arise from property division in Wisconsin divorce. Clients often wish to retain possession of certain items of personal property, from furniture to bank accounts to pets. Sometimes, people have an idea that property should be divided in a certain way, because “he cheated on me,” or because “she was the one who wanted the […]

Wisconsin divorce-do I get half the property?

In a Wisconsin divorce, the judge begins with the presumption that each spouse receives one-half of marital assets.  However, judge also considers 13 factors that can shift the final property division in favor of one spouse.  Common factors are the length of the marriage, the spouses’ earning ability (accounting for time spent out of the workforce to care for children), property owned […]

Divorce property division Can I sell property during divorce?

Not without your spouse’s agreement.  Wisconsin divorce property division law specifically prohibits selling, giving away, cashing in, or destroying assets once a divorce is filed.  This rules applies to all property, including retirement accounts, real estate, stocks, investments, checking accounts, CDs, vehicles, furniture, etc.   The purpose is to maintain the couple’s property as close to what it was on the date the divorce was filed.  […]

Damages in Wisconsin divorce /broken engagement?

Although a Wisconsin divorce court could not allow it, a Georgia court recently ordered a man to pay $50,000 to his “ex-fiancée,” ruling that a promise to marry is enforceable.   http://gma.yahoo.com/ga-man-must-pay-50-000-breaking-engagement-003334233.html It is not clear how the court arrived this value, though an attorney speculates it represents 1/2 the value of a jointly-owned home.   The Wisconsin legislature abolished […]

Military benefits in Wisconsin divorce.

Continuing a discussion of the Wisconsin Court of Appeals’ decision in Peterson v. Bauer, http://www.wicourts.gov/ca/opinion/DisplayDocument.pdf?content=pdf&seqNo=104582, I want to focus on the treatment of military retired pay in a Wisconsin divorce.    Federal rules govern the division of military retirement benefits upon divorce. Therefore, Wisconsin divorce cases involving military members must account for relevant federal laws.  The division of military benefits depends upon the length […]

Military benefits in Wisconsin divorce

The Wisconsin Court of Appeals today decided Peterson v. Bauer, http://www.wicourts.gov/ca/opinion/DisplayDocument.pdf?content=pdf&seqNo=104582, a Wisconsin divorce case addressing a husband’s request to terminate military disability payments to his ex-spouse.   Although the case will not be published, the ruling touches on several interesting issues that I will discuss in this and other posts. First, this case shows the pitfalls of […]

Pets as “property” in a Wisconsin divorce?

Pets are treated as property in Wisconsin divorce cases.  However, research continues to demonstrate that at least some animals have more complex emotions and intelligence.  A recent study found that dogs may have emotions similar to humans http://news.yahoo.com/scans-reveal-striking-similarity-between-human-canine-minds-162147298.html.   As a dog owner myself, this is not really surprising.  However, those feelings are increasingly supported by scientific […]

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