How does the length of marriage impact divorce?

On Behalf of | Jan 11, 2023 | Divorce |

Some couples might realize soon after marriage that they want a divorce. Those spouses may wonder if the marriage’s length affects the outcome of the divorce.

In Minnesota, the marriage timeframe may or may not impact some aspects of divorce.

Asset division

Without a prenuptial agreement, assets obtained during the marriage are usually considered marital property and must get split equitably between spouses during divorce. Additionally, property owned by one spouse before the marriage may also become joint assets if that spouse combines the property with marital assets, such as a shared checking account. The property division does not consider the length of the marriage, and all marital assets get distributed in the divorce regardless of the marriage length.

Child support

Spouses in a short-term marriage can still have children together. Since the child’s well-being is the priority, the courts do not consider the length of the marriage when deciding child support awards.

Spousal support

While the length of marriage does not impact asset division or child support, it matters when calculating spousal support. While there is no specific formula for making these determinations, the courts consider the length of the marriage when determining if either spouse is eligible for an award and the duration of the support. Spouses married for a short time may not receive spousal support or only temporary support, whereas longer-married couples might receive long-term or permanent payments.

While the length of a marriage can impact spousal support, the final decision is at the judge’s discretion. If spouses believe they need financial support after their divorce, they should consider requesting it no matter how long the marriage lasted.