COVID-19 Information

In light of COVID-19, Matthew Lane & Associates will be able to meet with new clients via Zoom. To discuss your options, please call the office. Thank you!
Matthew Lane & Associates, P.A.
Palm Beach Gardens, Wellington, Boca Raton, West Palm Beach (561) 328-1111

Division of Property and Assets in Florida

In a recent division of property and assets case, captioned Gotro v. Gotro the Florida Court of Appeal held that a trial court should not include expended assets in an equitable distribution scheme unless these assets were dissipated as a result of one of the parties' misconduct. In this case, the parties had a 39 year marriage and had 4 adult children. The husband was the primary breadwinner. The husband had a number of bank accounts which were marital assets. The significant bank accounts, for purposes of this appeal, were two accounts at BBVA Compass Bank. By the time that the final hearing took place, the balances in these two bank accounts was significantly lower than they had been at the time of the filing of the divorce. The husband testified that he had used the money in these accounts for his living expenses. The husband requested that the trial court distribute these accounts based upon their value at the time of the final hearing and not as of the date of the filing of the dissolution of marriage. In fashioning its final judgment, the trial court used the values in the accounts as of the date of the filing of the divorce.

In fashioning a division of property and assets the trial court can utilize any date of valuation that the court decides is equitable and just. Different assets can be valued as of different dates. However, it is usually inappropriate to include assets that no longer exist in a division of property scheme. The exception to this rule is when one of the parties' misconduct results in dissipation of the parties assets during the pendency of the proceedings. A parties' misconduct may become the basis for assigning an expended asset to that spouse. If the trial court decides to do this, in its ruling, the court must make specific findings that spouse engaged in intentional misconduct. The court must find that the parties' expended asset was used for a purpose unrelated to the marriage during a time when the parties' marriage was undergoing a breakdown.

If your spouse has used marital assets to support a girlfriend or a boyfriend, contact Florida divorce attorney Matthew Lane, Esq. at Matthew Lane & Associates, P.A. at (561) 651-7273.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
Email Us For A Response

Palm Beach Gardens Office
The Financial Center at the Gardens
3801 PGA Boulevard
Suite 600
Palm Beach Gardens, Florida 33410

Toll Free: (800) 411-3434
Phone: (561) 328-1111
Map & Directions

Wellington Office
Wellington Reserve
1035 South State Road 7
Suite 315
Wellington, Florida 33414

Toll Free: (800) 411-3434
Phone: (561) 328-1111
Map & Directions

West Palm Beach Office
Phillips Point
777 South Flagler Drive
Suite 800
West Palm Beach, Florida 33401

Toll Free: (800) 411-3434
Phone: (561) 328-1111
Map & Directions

Boca Raton Office
One Boca Place
2255 Glades Road
Suite 324A
Boca Raton, Florida 33431

Toll Free: (800) 411-3434
Phone: (561) 328-1111
Map & Directions