☰ Revisor of Missouri


Chapter 452

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  452.330.  Disposition of property and debts, factors to be considered. — 1.  In a proceeding for dissolution of the marriage or legal separation, or in a proceeding for disposition of property following dissolution of the marriage by a court which lacked personal jurisdiction over the absent spouse or lacked jurisdiction to dispose of the property, the court shall set apart to each spouse such spouse's nonmarital property and shall divide the marital property and marital debts in such proportions as the court deems just after considering all relevant factors including:

  (1)  The economic circumstances of each spouse at the time the division of property is to become effective, including the desirability of awarding the family home or the right to live therein for reasonable periods to the spouse having custody of any children;

  (2)  The contribution of each spouse to the acquisition of the marital property, including the contribution of a spouse as homemaker;

  (3)  The value of the nonmarital property set apart to each spouse;

  (4)  The conduct of the parties during the marriage; and

  (5)  Custodial arrangements for minor children.

  2.  For purposes of sections 452.300 to 452.415 only, "marital property" means all property acquired by either spouse subsequent to the marriage except:

  (1)  Property acquired by gift, bequest, devise, or descent;

  (2)  Property acquired in exchange for property acquired prior to the marriage or in exchange for property acquired by gift, bequest, devise, or descent;

  (3)  Property acquired by a spouse after a decree of legal separation;

  (4)  Property excluded by valid written agreement of the parties; and

  (5)  The increase in value of property acquired prior to the marriage or pursuant to subdivisions (1) to (4) of this subsection, unless marital assets including labor, have contributed to such increases and then only to the extent of such contributions.

  3.  All property acquired by either spouse subsequent to the marriage and prior to a decree of legal separation or dissolution of marriage is presumed to be marital property regardless of whether title is held individually or by the spouses in some form of co-ownership such as joint tenancy, tenancy in common, tenancy by the entirety, and community property.  The presumption of marital property is overcome by a showing that the property was acquired by a method listed in subsection 2 of this section.

  4.  Property which would otherwise be nonmarital property shall not become marital property solely because it may have become commingled with marital property.

  5.  The court's order as it affects distribution of marital property shall be a final order not subject to modification; provided, however, that orders intended to be qualified domestic relations orders affecting pension, profit sharing and stock bonus plans pursuant to the U.S. Internal Revenue Code shall be modifiable only for the purpose of establishing or maintaining the order as a qualified domestic relations order or to revise or conform its terms so as to effectuate the expressed intent of the* order.

  6.  A certified copy of any decree of court affecting title to real estate may be filed for record in the office of the recorder of deeds of the county and state in which the real estate is situated by the clerk of the court in which the decree was made.


(L. 1973 H.B. 315 § 7, A.L. 1981 H.B. 96, A.L. 1988 H.B. 1272, et al., A.L. 1996 S.B. 869, A.L. 1998 S.B. 910)

*Word "the" does not appear in original rolls.

(1975) Rights acquired under a contract to purchase land constitute "property" and "marital property" and are subject to division by the court in a dissolution of marriage.  Claunch v. Claunch (A.), 525 S.W.2d 788.

(1976) All property acquired subsequent to marriage taken in joint names is marital property subject to division upon dissolution unless (1) it is shown that such property was acquired in exchange for property acquired prior to the marriage, and (2) it is shown by clear and convincing evidence that the transfer was not intended as a provision for a settlement upon or as a gift to the other spouse.  Conrad v. Bowers (A.), 533 S.W.2d 614.

(1976) For the purposes of this division of marital property under this section, the "conduct" of the parties during the marriage is a relevant factor to be considered by the trial court and the award to the husband of all of the real estate determined to be marital property was not error.  Conrad v. Bowers (A.), 533 S.W.2d 614.

(1976) Trial courts are vested with broad discretion in dividing marital property in dissolution of marriage proceedings.  In re Marriage of Vanet (A.), 544 S.W.2d 236.

(1976) The word "conduct" means general conduct of the parties during the marriage and is not limited to conduct relating to financial misdeeds. Butcher v. Butcher (A.), 544 S.W.2d 249.

(1976) For discussion of division of marital property and definition of same see Davis v. Davis (A.), 544 S.W.2d 259.

(1977) While wife's misconduct was to be taken into account in dividing marital property, it had begun late in the nineteen year marriage and was not such as to deprive her of right to share equitably in marital property.  Thus, in addition to shares in closely held corporation awarded by trial court, she would be awarded a farm acquired by parties during marriage.  Marriage of Schulte (A.), 546 S.W.2d 41.

(1977) Requirement that court make a division of marital property in a dissolution action is mandatory and failure to comply results in no final judgment in the action.  The fact that a final judgment has not been rendered bars an appeal under the provisions of § 512.020, RSMo.  Corder v. Corder (A.), 546 S.W.2d 798.

(1977) Property purchased with earnings during marriage is marital property regardless of how title is taken.  Held error to set a future date for sale of property and allow a party a dollar value when sold.  Inflation could seriously alter the value of the amount received so that proper judgment should have been for a percentage of the sale to be held in the future. Ortmann v. Ortmann (A.), 550 S.W.2d 226.

(1977) Held, failure of either party's petition to ask for division of property does not relieve trial judge from duty to make a division of the property. Hulsey v. Hulsey, (A.), 550 S.W.2d 902.

(1977) A husband may not voluntarily limit his work to reduce his income and escape support payments.  A court may in proper circumstances impute an income to a husband according to what he could have earned by the use of his best efforts. Klinge v. Klinge (A.), 554 S.W.2d 474.

(1978) Statute does not require equal division of marital property, but only "just" division.  This is true where one spouse has engaged in marital misconduct. Arp v. Arp (A.),572 S.W.2d 232.

(1978) Personal jurisdiction over an absent spouse is not necessary to confer jurisdiction for the purpose of dividing marital property.  Chenoweth v. Chenoweth (A.), 575 S.W.2d 871.

(1984) "Source of funds" theory, adopted in this case, requires that the court determine the character of property by the source of funds financing the purchase, so that the property is considered to have been "acquired" as it is paid for.  This theory allows for reimbursement for increase in value of the property. Hoffman v. Hoffman (Mo. banc), 676 S.W.2d 817.

(1985) Held, the "source of funds rule" as announced in Hoffman v. Hoffman, 676 S.W.2d 817 (Mo banc 1984) should be retrospectively applied.  Sumners v. Sumners, (Mo.), 701 S.W.2d 720.

(1987) Goodwill in a professional practice is property subject to division pursuant to this section and is defined as the value of the practice which exceeds its tangible assets and which is the result of the tendency of clients/patients to return to and recommend the practice irrespective of the reputation of the individual practitioner.  Hanson v. Hanson, 738 S.W.2d 429 (Mo. banc.).

(1987) Proper date for valuing marital property in a dissolution proceeding is the date of the trial.  Taylor v. Taylor, 736 S.W.2d 388 (Mo. banc.).

(1987) It was proper for the court to consider, as an economic circumstance, in making a division of property, the sums voluntarily expended by husband for the support and education of a healthy adult child and to offset the wife's entitlement to husband's retirement pay by sums she received or would have received in maintenance.  In Re Marriage of Dildy, 737 S.W.2d 756 (Mo.App.S.D.).

(1997) Statute does not allow the court to quash a QDRO and replace it with a domestic relations order that was not qualified.  Offield v. Offield, 955 S.W.2d 247 (Mo.App.W.D.).

(1999) Statute does not give a trial court discretion to divide and distribute marital property to the parties' children.  Randolph v. Randolph, 8 S.W.3d 160 (Mo.App.W.D.).

(2003) Section is more specific concerning authorization for modifying qualified domestic relations order and thus prevails over more general statute precluding modification of marital property division.  Ricketts v. Ricketts, 113 S.W.3d 255 (Mo.App.W.D.).

---- end of effective  28 Aug 1998 ----

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