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Is gender an issue in property division in divorce? Maybe

On Behalf of | Aug 10, 2016 | Firm News, High Asset Divorce

It surely will come as no surprise to any reader that Arkansas couples going through divorce should expect to face many decisions that they never anticipated. Parents have to try to sort out the nuances of child custody and support. If the couple is well off, the complexities of property division can be significant.

In addition to generating some emotionally tense situations, there is an aspect of the process that many may not take into consideration – psychology. As much as our cultural ideals emphasize the equality of all, most psychologists would probably agree that there are significant differences in the way men and women tend to approach negotiations. For the sake of equitable property division, consulting an attorney is recommended.

So what are some of the differences psychologists have identified between husbands and wives? Well, it’s probably safe to say that the book is still being written on this subject, but according to a couple of psych researchers out of the University of Pennsylvania, there are some clear distinctions between men and women.

The female researchers say one of the biggest is that women tend to be concerned with relationships with others. Men, on the other hand, are less concerned about togetherness and focus more on getting specific tasks done. The concern here is that a wife might be more likely to forgo a fair division of the couple’s wealth.

The concept of ownership, real or imagined, can also be a major psychological factor in property division. For example, say a car is purchased in one of the names of the two spouses. Legally, it might belong to that person for division purposes. However, if the other spouse has a greater sense of perceived ownership, it could be a source of friction at divorce time.

Clearly, the valuation of goods can create stormy seas and maintaining a sense of calm is easier with solid representation not just legally, but financially as well.


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