Household Items and Fixtures

Divorces are about more than just alimony and child support.  A divorce must totally separate the assets of the marriage.  Many people pose the question of how do we know what items can be removed from the home and what stays with the home.

This issue revolves around the idea of household goods vs. fixtures attached to the martial home.  It’s a seemingly simple issue that can evolve into an impasse ending up requiring a court hearing to settle it.  Generally speaking attached fixtures will stay with the home as may some permanent structures that may have been built on the property.  What about things in the home such as paintings, lighting fixtures, bathroom fixtures etc.  These may seem trivial but many times these items can be very expensive or have some other value to the client.

The best way to approach this issue during a settlement or mediation is to take each item in turn and come to a compromise.  For instance if a particular fixture is to be removed by the spouse not keeping the home that spouse may need to replace said fixture with something similar or at least adequate to do the job.  If the item is permanently attached and cannot be removed without damage to the home then the value of the item can be used to offset other items or monetary payments in the divorce.