Can you sell your assets before a divorce in New Jersey?

On Behalf of | Jul 15, 2023 | Blog, DIVORCE - Property Division |

Divorce often brings up lots of questions about how to protect your interests and assets. You might wonder whether you can legally sell your assets before the divorce process begins in New Jersey. This idea might seem attractive, especially if you wish to shield certain assets from the division process.

However, understanding New Jersey’s laws governing property division in divorce cases can help you decide whether this is a good idea.

Can you sell your assets before a divorce?

In New Jersey, it is legally possible to sell your assets before a divorce. But this does not mean it is always a wise or ethical decision. New Jersey law calls for equitable distribution of marital assets in a divorce, which means fair but not necessarily equal. If the court suspects you sold assets to deprive your spouse of their fair share, it may adjust the distribution to compensate.

What are the potential consequences?

If a court determines that you sold assets with the intent to keep them out of a divorce settlement and hide them from your spouse, it can order a variety of remedies. This can include assigning more of the remaining marital assets to your spouse or assigning to you a larger share of the marital debt.

Is it worth it?

While it might be tempting to sell off assets before a divorce, consider your actions carefully. Always remember, honesty and transparency often yield the best outcomes in a divorce proceeding. Attempting to hide assets or skew the financial picture can lead to penalties, including a less favorable asset division or even contempt of court.

While it is possible to sell your assets before a divorce in New Jersey, it can lead to severe consequences if done with the intent to deprive your spouse of their share. Remember, the goal of any divorce settlement in New Jersey is to reach an equitable distribution of assets.