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Equitable Distribution

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Equitable Distribution of Property in Florida


Understanding Property Division in Separation and Divorce

Equitable distribution is the legal term for dividing marital assets and liabilities in a divorce. When married couples separate and move towards a divorce in Florida, it can be a very emotional time making it exceedingly difficult to determine who should get what marital assets and who should be responsible for what marital liabilities. At Waterhouse Law Firm, we are mindful that equitable distribution of a marital estate goes beyond money and values of assets. Our goal is to educate and guide our clients through a life-changing, highly emotional transition with as little stress as possible.

In Florida, the Court begins with the premise that “equitable” distribution means “equal” – meaning that all marital assets and debts should be divided equally between the husband and wife. However, the Court may find that there is justification for unequal distribution based on relevant factors, including:

  • Physical Custody: The parent with whom the child lives has physical custody,
  • Legal Custody: This refers to the power to make major life choices, especially medical, educational and religious decisions, for the child.

Helping Florida Couples Divide Marital Assets–Not Dissipate Them

As a general rule, the less that divorcing couples fight over marital assets and debt, running up legal fees in the process, the more assets there are left to divide. At Waterhouse Law Firm, we are committed to advocating for our clients’ best interests with regard to equitable distribution. We help clients understand what is and is not considered marital property and to negotiate a division that is equitable and fair.

The divorce attorneys of Waterhouse Law Firm have the courtroom experience to litigate equitable distribution issues if that is in our client’s best interests, but we are also skilled negotiators with years of practice in alternative dispute resolution. We strive to achieve the best possible distribution of property with the least conflict and expense necessary. We believe couples should divide their assets with each other–not with their attorneys.

Dividing Marital Estates of All Sizes and Types

Our divorce attorneys have worked with clients in short-term marriages with few assets, and also with clients who have complex, multimillion-dollar marital estates. Some types of property, such as bank accounts, can be relatively easy to divide. Others, such as family businesses, are much more complicated.

Waterhouse Law Firm is experienced in dealing with a broad spectrum of marital asset and debt types. We have relationships with financial and business professionals who can assist with issues such as accurate valuation of family businesses and their assets.

Most of all, we are mindful that equitable distribution of a marital estate is about much more than just money. As with every aspect of our divorce and family law cases, we remain aware that our goal is to guide our clients successfully through a difficult transition in their lives, with as little stress as possible.

If you and your spouse need to divide your property due to separation or divorce, Waterhouse Law Firm can help. We work with clients in Okaloosa, Walton, Santa Rosa and Bay Counties. We look forward to serving you and your family. Contact us for more information.


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Working with someone you trust is essential. At the Waterhouse Law firm, you can rest assured that we will handle your case with the level of detail and care we would give to our very own family.

  • Waterhouse Law firm, P.A.
    51 3rd Street, Bldg. 8
    Shalimar, FL 32579
  • 850.424.1651
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