All You Should Know About WI Divorce Laws and Property Division

WI Divorce Laws—Property Division Rules Explained

Determining how to divide property in a divorce often causes conflict between spouses. The reasons go beyond emotional attachment to possessions—many spouses feel they need sufficient assets to support themselves after the divorce.

One of the crucial factors to consider when divorcing in Wisconsin is how the state manages property division. In this article, DoNotpay will address WI divorce laws and property division and explain how you can benefit from a friendly divorce with your spouse!

Is Wisconsin a 50/50 State for Divorce?

Wisconsin is one of the few so-called community property states. That means all property, assets, and debts are equally divided between spouses during a divorce, legal separation, or annulment. In most other states, a judge decides how to distribute the property depending on the circumstances of each case.

Understanding Wisconsin Divorce Laws—Property Division

To comprehend Wisconsin laws about property division, you must first understand:

  1. What constitutes property in this state
  2. Which assets are subject to division and under what circumstances

Property under WI law refers to anything with a monetary value that can be bought or sold. Common examples of the property include:

  • Houses
  • Vehicles
  • Clothing
  • Cash and bank accounts
  • Stocks
  • Pension plans
  • Patents
  • Businesses
  • Life insurance with cash value

Wisconsin Marital Law defines possessions owned by a married couple as marital or community property, with some exceptions.

To find out more about how different types of property are distributed in a Wisconsin divorce, consult the table below:

PropertyDefinitionDivision Under Wisconsin Law
Quasi-community propertyAssets purchased by one or both spouses while living in a state with non-community property lawsOnce the couple moves to Wisconsin and files for divorce there, the state divides this type of property as if it was acquired in a community property state
Separate propertyPossessions acquired as a gift or inheritance from a third partyThis type of property is typically exempt from equal property division in WI. Different rules may apply when a separate property was commingled into a marital asset (for example, one person's inheritance deposited into a joint account). Gifts exchanged between spouses are subject to equal division
Mixed propertySeparate property mixed into marital assetsJudges typically divide mixed property by estimating which portion is marital and which separate

Divorce in Wisconsin—Property Division Criteria

While Wisconsin is a community property state, the law allows courts to distribute the assets differently if there’s a valid reason to do so. Before determining whether to take that path, the judge will typically consider the following:

  • Marriage duration
  • Assets each spouse brought into the union
  • Amount of property that’s not subject to division brought by each spouse
  • Age and physical and emotional health of each party
  • Each spouse’s earning capacity
  • Amount and duration of alimony
  • Each spouse’s contribution to the marriage
  • Other financial circumstances of each spouse
  • Tax consequences for each marriage partner

Who Can Divide Assets During a Wisconsin Divorce?

Considering all factors that have to be addressed, property and debt division during divorce can cause great stress. How fast you’ll complete the process and at what cost depends on your relationship with your spouse and willingness to negotiate the division peacefully.

Three main methods of having your marital property divided include:

  1. Agreeing privately with your spouse
  2. Attending mediation
  3. Letting the divorce judge decide

Settle the Terms With Your Spouse

Are you and your spouse on good terms and eager to get out of the marriage as fast as possible? Filing for an uncontested divorce—which involves settling all divorce issues privately—will enable you to end your marriage without excessive frustrations and empty pockets. If you , we will incorporate all details of your understanding in a bullet-proof divorce settlement agreement.

Hire a Mediator

When the spouses are willing to settle everything out of court but could benefit from professional guidance, they can opt for mediation. A judge may also order the couple to use this method. Once the negotiations are completed, spouses need to outline the results in a divorce settlement agreement.

Let the Divorce Judge Divide Your Marital Property

If you and your spouse can’t work out the terms of the agreement on your own, the case will move to the courtroom. After multiple hearings, the judge will make the final decision and split the property as they see fit. Bear in mind that taking this path will prolong the divorce proceedings significantly. You’ll also need to hire a lawyer to present your case and ensure the best possible outcome.

Let DoNotPay Speed Up Your Divorce Proceedings

Have you and your spouse settled on a quickie divorce? Creating a comprehensive marital settlement agreement is an essential part of any successful divorce.

Luckily, you don’t need to overpay lawyers to draft one. We will create a professional marital settlement agreement at a low cost and in record time!

Here’s what to do:

  1. in a web browser
  2. Go to our Divorce Settlement Agreement tool
  3. Answer our chatbot’s questions regarding your spouse and other relevant matters

We will use the provided info and combine it with our knowledge of state laws to generate a document that ticks all the boxes.

Do you need a notarized agreement? You can book an online notary using our platform and complete the process from the comfort of your home!

Do you need more info on divorces? Check out our articles on the following subjects:

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