Division of Property
Preparing a List of Property Items
Although the court system can order that a specific item be kept or held by one party or the other, or the court can order that items be sold and the value be divided, it is preferred that the parties reach their own agreements as to what items are going to whom.
The general principle is that children's items or property go with the child. However there could be some cases where there had to be some discussion about what items are going to the residence of the mother or to the father.
In a home there are very many common items. For example, dishes, cooking utensils, family photos, towels. The general concept where parties are dividing items 50/50 is for these to be divided and in an approximately equal number. There can be some adjustments made on this if it would make more sense that one parent, who may be having a number of children live at their residence, may keep more of something like towels. Otherwise you would call it within the memo, "one half." If it was thought that more should go to one or the other it might say, "two-thirds."
Setting Out the List
One of the best ways of setting up the list is to talk about each room separately. In other words a person would go into the room and describe and list the items that are in the room. They do not have to be individually listed. The description should just be sufficient that a person reading th document would have some basic understanding. For example there could be a kitchen table and chairs and this is all that would have to be said. There could be a description for example of "tools in the garage."
Describing Who Receives The Item
Once the list is set out of what is in the room, then you can indicate who will be receiving it. A common practice is to use "H" for husband and "W" for wife. If something is to go to one of the children you could put the child's initials or "C."
No Need to Value Items
There is no need for you to set out a value as to the items. If the lawyers feel that something needs to have a value put beside it that information will be requested later.
The personal items of each will of course go to him or her. For example if there was sports equipment or skis belonging to the Husband these of course would go to the Husband. You can't have some sports equipment that is not clear and if there is any chance for confusion it would be better if the item was listed or at least generally described.
It is common for the gifts given by one family to go to that person. For example, if a grandmother gave the Wife an antique vase, that should go to the Wife. If it was a gift to the Wife alone (especially if given before marriage) then it goes to the Wife through the general application of the Rules that it is excluded property. Even if given to both at some point it usually follows that the item would stay with the person to whom it was whose family gave the gift.
Sending the Information by Email
It is best if you send your list by email. This allows it to be on our computer system so that it can be changed or altered easily.
Negotiations as to the Items
The first draft that you make you should date it and put your name on it. It may be that there are several drafts that are created before there is a final Agreement by the parties. Once a final Agreement is reached, and if we can get the initials of both parties on it, then we have a document that could be enforceable in court.