New Jersey Marital Property: When Your Spouse Depletes Assets
DISSIPATION OF MARITAL PROPERTY
One party may anticipate the marriage is failing, that divorce is imminent, and attempt to spend down marital assets. To that end, the wronged party may find themself in a position to receive little or nothing because of the ill will of the other party.
Similar to underemployment, the Courts will examine the circumstances surrounding the event. The party who has depleted assets will have to show the expenditure was for the joint marital venture and was not done to intentionally deprive the other spouse of equitable distribution.
The question ultimately to be answered in determining whether there has been a dissipation of marital property is whether assets were expended by one spouse with intent of diminishing the other spouse’s share of marital estate.