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How Does the Court consider Asset and Debt Division in Kansas?

Couple going through divorce signing papers

K.S.A. 2016 Supp. 23-2802(c) requires that the trial court shall consider the following things in dividing assets and debts:

  1. The age of the parties;
  2. The duration of the marriage;
  3. The property owned by the parties;
  4. Their present and future earning capacities;
  5. The time, source, and manner of acquisition of property;
  6. Family ties and obligations;
  7. The allowance of maintenance or lack thereof;
  8. Dissipation of assets;
  9. The tax consequences of the property division upon the respective economic circumstances of the parties;  and
  10. Such other facts as the court considers necessary to make a just and reasonable division of property.

Beyond the statute, there is case law that provides for further clarification on how a fair asset and debt division can be completed in a Kansas divorce. 

Specifically case law indicates that in the trial court’s effort to arrive at a just and reasonable division of property, there is “absolutely no obligation on the part of the trial court to award each party all property owned by such party prior to the marriage or property inherited or received by gift during the marriage. In re the Marriage of Schwien, 17 Kan. App. 2d 498, 839 P.2d 541 (1992), as well as the McCain v. McCain case, 219 Kan. 780, 549 P.2d 896 (1976).

Kansas law also does not require an equal split or division of all property acquired during the marriage. Rather, the trial court is given the latitude and discretion to consider all property, regardless of when it is acquired, to arrive at a just, fair and reasonable division of property. In Re the Marriage of Rodriguez, 266 Kan. 347, 969 P.2d 880 (1998) and Grant v. Grant, 9 Kan.App.2d 671, 685 P.2d 327 (1984).

What does this mean for your Kansas divorce case?

Every case and situation is unique. The trial courts in Kansas are given wide latitude and discretion to consider the needs of the parties (the adults, the spouses) as well as the needs of the family (i.e. the children) to divide the assets and debts in a way that meets everyone’s needs. If you have a Kansas divorce case involving simple or complex asset division, it is important to a successful outcome that you seek expert advice from an experienced family law attorney. Call Pingel Family Law today at (816) 208-8130 to schedule your consultation to understand Kansas law regarding property division and how it is likely to affect your case and situation.