The division of your assets is a huge, messy part of divorce. You can either go with the courts rulings on everything and be done, or you can try to fight for the pieces you really want.
The divorce process takes a significant toll and parts that are so filled with tension, like asset division, can be that much more difficult. You will likely not get everything you want, so it’s important to know when to fold. You can prepare yourself by understanding exactly what you really want.
Make a list
The first step to understanding which assets you want in divorce is to know exactly what you are dealing with. Write down everything you own as a couple and give yourself some time to sit with it.
What do you absolutely need and what do you just want? Try organizing your list by most important to least important.
Why do you want it?
Especially when you are feeling contempt towards your spouse, it can be easy to want something just to keep it from the other person. Do you really want that painting? Or would it just be nice to know your spouse doesn’t have it? Generally, the fight for something you don’t really want isn’t worth it.
Consider the tradeoffs
Remember that if you fight for something big, like the house, it may mean that you don’t get other things. What are you willing to give up to get that thing?
Think about the assets financially
The things we own are emotional. We live our lives surrounded by them and it can be difficult to see past the history behind those items. While some pieces, like your grandmother’s jewelry, may be so sentimental you want to fight for them, others may not be. Try looking at each item’s value and consider how having or not having it will impact your future. Now is also a good time to talk with an accountant and a lawyer about which assets would be better for you financially.
Bring your list to your lawyer. They will be able to tell you what you can and cannot fight for and help talk through what is worth the argument.