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North Dakota Property Division Factors

In North Dakota, 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 District Court within the Decree of Divorce.

North Dakota is referred to as an "equitable distribution" state. When the parties are unable to reach a settlement, the District 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 District Court to be fair.

If the parties can not agree otherwise, the court shall make an equitable distribution of the property and debts of the parties.

The court may award property in a postjudgment proceeding if a party has failed to disclose property and debts as required by rules adopted by the supreme court or the party fails to comply with the terms of a court order distributing property and debts. (North Dakota Century Code - Volume 3A - Chapters: 14-05-24)

Since North Dakota 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 North Dakota property division in the North Dakota state statutes located at: http://www.state.nd.us/.