Asset Division in Divorce | Agricultural Assets

  • Post category:Asset Division
  • Reading time:6 mins read

When you’re going through a divorce, you may be concerned about how your assets will be divided. This is extremely important to farm owners who are not only protecting their assets, but their way of life and their legacy. Citino Family Law LLC has extensive experience with asset division in divorce and will protect your agricultural assets. We know our farmers and their spouses work very hard to make a living, so we want to help you get the best possible results. Contact us today at (312) 248–3849.

Asset Division in Divorce | Citino Family Law LLC | Maria Citino
Asset Division in Divorce | Citino Family Law LLC | Maria Citino

An overview of agricultural asset division in divorce

Illinois is an equitable distribution state, which means the court won’t simply divide marital property evenly. Rather, the courts will consider a variety of factors such as: agreements, dissipation, each party’s contribution, earning potential, the length of the marriage, maintenance, parental responsibilities, and taxes. 

The courts will also need to determine what is marital and non marital property. There are many types of assets that may be obtained, accrued and even accumulated during a marriage. How assets are classified depends on when they were acquired and how they have been used. The same legal principles for asset division in divorce applies to farming couples going through the process. 

Our firm has helped numerous clients ensure that agricultural assets are equitably divided between spouses and that family farm interests are protected to the extent allowable, if appropriate. Farming interests must be valued and distributed, such as

  • Crops (both growing and stored)
  • Livestock
  • Farm equipment and machinery
  • Farmland and tenancy issues
  • Prepaid expenses for future crop year(s)

Other considerations:

  • Nuances of cash rent vs. crop share arrangements
  • Allocation of expenses and profit sharing between nuclear families
  • Government subsidies
  • Tax implications of farming enterprises

At Citino Family Law, we consult with business valuation experts, accountants, and real estate appraisers to arrive at fair and supported valuations which serve as a basis for property distribution between the spouses. We will make sure that your family and your interests are protected. 

Asset Division in Divorce | Citino Family Law LLC | Maria Citino
Asset Division in Divorce | Citino Family Law LLC | Maria Citino

Preparing for your divorce

Much contentious debate can ensue regarding how this property is to be valued. Often one spouse will contend that a certain piece of marital property has no value while the opposing spouse will claim otherwise. Having thorough documentation will help your attorney and other experts understand what assets you have and what they’re worth. 

Some of the things that you can do to prepare are make a list of :

  • All crops that are stored as well as currently harvesting, including
  • Livestock that you own
  • All farm equipment and machinery
  • Grain inventory prepaids
  • Rental agreements (cash rent and crop share agreements, if any)

Be as detailed as possible and provide supporting documentation like contracts with vendors, proof of purchase of livestock, closing papers for farmland, and any other paperwork that can verify your claims. If you have any tenancy issues, you should provide that information as well. A family farm is a business that many judges may not have experience with, so the more information you can provide, the easier it will be for them to make a fair judgment. 

Citino Family Law can help with agricultural asset division in divorce

During divorce, all marital property must be divided. The manner in which property is divided can have lasting financial impacts on both parties. When family farms or agricultural lands are involved, the stakes are even higher because it is your livelihood. Our firm is well versed in the nuances of farmland valuation and asset protection and will work with experts to ensure your assets are properly valued and your business is protected. Contact us today for a consultation. (312) 248–3849

Asset Division in Divorce | Citino Family Law LLC | Maria Citino
Asset Division in Divorce | Citino Family Law LLC | Maria Citino