In equitable distribution all assets are divided unless certain property is deemed to be seperate. If the parties do not come to an agreement the court will determine what property constitutes marital assets subject to distribution. Good luck.
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If you opened the account before an action for divorce was filed, or if the source of the funds was funds earned or saved during the marriage, then your spouse can claim that those funds are marital. If the funds are marital, your spouse can claim half of the marital portion.
Generally, any value that is acquired or accrued during the marriage is subject to equitable distribution regardless of the source. Of course, there are numerous exceptions, etc. and "equitable" doesn't automatically mean "half". I suggest you consult with an attorney immediately to fully review all your rights, options and obligations before any more steps are taken toward your divorce. Good luck!
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When you say "separate," this may differ from what attorneys mean by "separate property." The latter term generally signifies assets which you had prior to the marriage. So the question becomes: is the money in that "separate" account money you earned during the marriage (if yes, it's generally marital property), or money you had coming into the marriage which you kept in a separate account? In any event, I encourage you to follow-up with a NYC Divorce lawyer.
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All assets are subject to equitable distribution if acquired during the marriage. There are several exceptions; if it was acquired before the marriage,nif it was a gift or inheritance or a recovery from a personal injury accident case. An attorney would need to review the checking account statements to have a better idea.
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your question is fact sensitive and the answer depends upon when you opened the account, what funds were used to do so and what finds are deposited into it. Good idea to work with your attorney to figure it out.