What am I entitled if I have been married for 25 years and now my husband wants a divorce? 20 Answers as of January 24, 2013

He will retire in 15 months. We own a home and have one adult child (21 still in school). He stated that if I even try to get any of his pension or house he would be sure to find a way to kill me and make it look like an accident. He is a police officer and owns several guns. I am not sure what to do or what I should do. I do work and make approximately $45,000 per year and he makes approximately $85,000 per year.

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Law Offices of John F. Nicholson
Law Offices of John F. Nicholson | John F. Nicholson
You are entitled to 50% of the community assets acquired during the 25 year marriage, including pensions. If you have safety concerns you may need to get a restraining order based upon death threats.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 1/24/2013
Law Offices of Arlene D. Kock
Law Offices of Arlene D. Kock | Arlene D. Kock
Immediately meet with an experienced family law attorney to get protective orders.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 1/23/2013
Diefer Law Group, P.C.
Diefer Law Group, P.C. | Abel Fernandez
You are entitled to one half of the assets and debts accumulated during the marriage including retirement accounts. If he makes more money than you, you could also seek spousal support.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 1/23/2013
The Law Firm of Kristina L. Combs, PLLC
The Law Firm of Kristina L. Combs, PLLC | Kristina L. Combs
It would depend on whether the property is considered separate or community property. If it is community property you would be entitled to 1/2. If it is separate property you would have to prove contribution in order to argue for a portion of it. You should seek a restraining order since he is making threats against you. It sounds as if you would be entitled to his retirement benefits.
Answer Applies to: Texas
Replied: 1/23/2013
The Ticktin Law Group
The Ticktin Law Group | Peter Ticktin
First, if you have any concerns and he threatens you please seek legal counsel for a possible restraining order. Do not take those types of threats lightly. If you have been a resident for 6 months either person can seek a divorce. Anything that was accumulated during the marriage, whether an asset of a debt is considered marital property. This includes the increase in value in his pension, retirement accounts, homes, etc. Your best bet is to speak with an attorney about the specifics of your case so that you can properly protect yourself and be represented so that he cannot simply bullying you into giving away what is rightfully yours.
Answer Applies to: Florida
Replied: 1/23/2013
    Richard D. Zasada, LLC | Richard D. Zasada
    Everything accumulated during the marriage is marital property, with few exceptions. You would be entitled to half his retirement for the years you were together. You also may be entitled to alimony, possible payment of your attorney's fees and an equitable distribution of all property and debts. You would also be entitled to half any equity in the home if it is marital. For your exact rights regarding a divorce you should make an appointment with an attorney who does family law.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 1/23/2013
    Danville Law Group | Scott Jordan
    You have two choices: fight for what you are entitled to or give in to his threats. Only you can make that choice. In divorce, you would be entitled to 1/2 of his pension and 1/2 of the equity in the house and spousal support, plus all of your personal belongings. You can hire an attorney, obtain a protective order based on the threats he has made. He may even be subject to disciplinary review by the police for his threatening you. I suggest you schedule an appointment with a good divorce attorney in your area.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/23/2013
    Law Offices of Frances Headley | Frances Headley
    You should make a plan to get to a place of safety and then you can pursue your half of the property and as well as support to which you are entitled. You should consult with the local domestic violence organization for assistance in making a plan to leave and then consult an attorney about restraining orders and asserting your property rights.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/23/2013
    Peyton and Associates | Barbara Peyton
    you are entitled to one-half of everything acquired during marriage except things acquired by inheritance or gift. You are absolutely entitled to one-half of his retirement pay and you need to file papers before he retires to protect your interests. If he has threatened to kill you, immediately apply for a restraining order. Most important, immediately make an appointment with an experienced family law attorney in your county who can advise you and help protect you and your rights.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/23/2013
    WARM SPRINGS LAW GROUP | Elliott D. Yug
    You are each entitled to a percentage of the other's pension. It will depend on the length of the marriage and how many years of the marriage was worked towards the pension. As to the death threat try and get it on tape or in writing.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 1/23/2013
    Donaldson Stewart, PC
    Donaldson Stewart, PC | Monica H. Donaldson Stewart
    Generally speaking, each party is entitled to half of all assets and debts that accumulated during the marriage (including the house and his pension). If you believe his threats are credible, you can consider asking the court to issue an Order of Protection that removes him from them home and prevents him from having contact with you. The order can also require him to surrender his firearms, which could affect his employment, so you will need to take that into consideration. Because your child is over 18 and has graduated high school, he is considered emancipated and therefore there will be no orders entered regarding him (even though he is still attending school). I recommend you consult with an attorney to discuss this matter in greater detail.
    Answer Applies to: Arizona
    Replied: 1/23/2013
    Law Office of Annette M. Cox, PLLC
    Law Office of Annette M. Cox, PLLC | Annette M. Cox
    It would probably be best to do a consult with a divorce attorney and consider your options. You are entitled to a portion of his pension that was accrued during the marriage as well as other assets including equity in a home. The law is clear on that, unless you decide to waive interest in the assets. Regarding your safety, you may want to consider an order of protection. Given that he is a law enforcement officer, it would be important to know your options and consider the strategy carefully.
    Answer Applies to: Arizona
    Replied: 1/23/2013
    Peters Law, PLLC
    Peters Law, PLLC | Mark T. Peters, Sr.
    You need to get an attorney right away. I would imagine that your attorney will seed to get a temporary order keeping your husband away from you because of the threats to your life. I think that you should also go to the State Police and tell them what he said to you. He is committing a crime and he needs to understand that.
    Answer Applies to: Idaho
    Replied: 1/23/2013
    LAW OFFICE | JAMES A. GIZICKI
    The general rule is for an equitable division of the marital estate (usually half) and this includes pensions. With those threats it is advisable to not remain in the same house with him. Also if you feel threaten you can make a police report.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 1/23/2013
    Law Office of Eric S. Lumberg | Eric S. Lumberg
    You are entitled to property and possible spousal support. His pension and equity from the home are also part of the settlement. Hire an attorney to represent you in the divorce and also obtain a personal protection order.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 1/23/2013
    Reger Rizzo & Darnall LLP | Kathleen DeLacy
    You are entitled to half of marital property, including pension and house, and alimony.
    Answer Applies to: Delaware
    Replied: 1/23/2013
    LAW OFFICE OF ANNE B. HOWARD | Anne B. Howard
    Hire an attorney. You are entitled to half his pension and half the house. If he threatens you again file for a restraining order though that can interfere with his job. You would probably get spousal support also. Child is too old for spousal support. Police officers are often bullies you need an attorney to protect your rights.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/23/2013
    The Law office of Karla M Mansur
    The Law office of Karla M Mansur | Karla Mansur
    Wow I am sorry you are dealing with this situation. I guess the first thing you need to consider is do you think he is serious. If you do then you need a restraining order asap. If you have proof of these threats you should have no trouble getting a 209A restraining order. They will take his guns if the order is issued. Despite the threats he making another important thing for you both to consider is that even if you agreed to walk with nothing a judge reviewing the terms of such an agreement probably would not find it fair and might not even let you get divorced on those terms. The best thing you can do for yourself is consult with a divorce lawyer immediately so that you can take all the proper precautions. Best of luck.
    Answer Applies to: Massachusetts
    Replied: 1/23/2013
    The Davies Law Firm, P.A.
    The Davies Law Firm, P.A. | Robert F. Davies, Esq.
    You should talk to the police first and a divorce lawyer second. Threatening to kill you if you divorce him and seek a division of assets? That is 'terroristic threats' under New Jersey law, and it is probably a crime wherever you live. Get to the police. then get a really smart, nasty lawyer and get away from this man.
    Answer Applies to: New Jersey
    Replied: 1/23/2013
    Petit & Dommershausen SC
    Petit & Dommershausen SC | Tajara Dommershausen
    File for a restraining order immediately. You are entitled to half the marital assets which includes his pension and the house. You are likely to receive some maintenance given the disparity in income.
    Answer Applies to: Wisconsin
    Replied: 1/23/2013
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