Hawaii Property Division Factors
In Hawaii, the property and debt issues are typically settled between the parties by a signed Marital Settlement Agreement or the property award is actually order and decreed by the Family Court within the Decree of Divorce.
Hawaii is referred to as an "equitable distribution" state. When the parties are unable to reach a settlement, the Family Court will take the following approach to dividing the assets; First, it will go through a discovery process to classify which property and debt is to be considered marital. Next, it will assign a monetary value on the marital property and debt. Last, it will distribute the marital assets between the two parties in an equitable fashion. Equitable does not mean equal, but rather what is deemed by the Family Court to be fair.
The court shall take into consideration when making a property award the following: the respective merits of the parties, the relative abilities of the parties, the condition in which each party will be left by the divorce, the burdens imposed upon either party for the benefit of the children of the parties, and all other circumstances of the case. (Hawaii Statutes - Title 580 - Chapters: 47)
Since Hawaii is an "Equitable Distribution" state, all marital property will be divided in an equitable fashion according to the court unless agreed to otherwise by the divorcing spouses. What does "equitable" mean? Equitable can be defined as "what is fair, not necessarily equal." To automatically believe the marital property would be divided 50-50 would be a wrong assumption in any equitable distribution state. You can also read more about Hawaii property division in the Hawaii state statutes located at: http://www.capitol.hawaii.gov/.
Locate a Professional:
Online Hawaii Divorce Service:
Online Custody Tool:
Frequently Asked Questions: