What is equitable division?
If you are not one of the few community property states, then you live in a common law, or equitable division state. In an equitable distribution state, courts consider an entire range of factors when deciding how to divide up the marital property, such as the length of the marriage, the amount and source of the income, liabilities, earnings potential, marital responsibilities, health, ability to care for yourself, who will be taking care of the children, your education, skill and employability, and your estate.
In short, in an equitable division state, judges largely use their common sense to split up the marital property. If one spouse has little education and hasn’t been employed in 30 years while the other has a degree and a high-paying job, obviously the marital split will favor the former in terms of spousal support. Moreover, the longer the marriage, the more likely a 50-50 split will arise in a divorce settlement.