Equitable distribution by definition is a judicial division of both your property rights and your obligations between spouses during divorce. There are different ways to do equitable distribution during divorce, it can be done by agreement or by a property settlement or by judicial decree.
In New York, DRL 236 B(5)(a) provides guidelines for equitable distribution. It says that equitable distribution of marital property shall be done only in case of divorce or dissolution of marriage or declaration of nullity of marriages. It also states that if in case there is no change in marital status through divorce or annulment, there cannot be a forceful equitable distribution of marital property. A court can forcefully interfere only if there is a change in marital status and separation.
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