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Oklahoma Property Division Factors

In Oklahoma, 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.

Oklahoma 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.

A decree ordred by the court will confirm for each spouse the property owned by him or her before marriage and the undisposed-of property acquired after marriage by him or her in his or her own right.

Whether real or personal, which has been acquired by the parties jointly during their marriage, whether the title thereto be in either or both of said parties, the court shall, subject to a valid antenuptial contract in writing, make such division between the parties as may appear just and reasonable, by a division of the property in kind, or by setting the same apart to one of the parties, and requiring the other thereof to be paid such sum as may be just and proper to effect a fair and just division thereof. The court may set apart a portion of the separate estate of a spouse to the other spouse for the support of the children of the marriage where custody resides with that spouse. (Oklahoma Statutes - Title 43 - Sections: 121)

Since Oklahoma 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 Oklahoma property division in the Oklahoma state statutes located at: http://oklegal.onenet.net/.