One of the most common mistakes clients make when beginning a divorce is believing that people get to keep the assets in their name. Clients will come to me and assume that if a car is in the wife’s name, the wife keeps the car, and if certain retirement accounts are in the husband’s name, he keeps those funds. That is not the case. New Jersey does not allocate assets based on who owns the asset. Rather, an asset is subject to distribution in a divorce if it was acquired during the marriage, no matter who owns the asset. For example, if a couple purchases a home during the marriage, that home is considered a joint asset of the marriage, even if owned in one spouse’s individual name. The issue is therefore one of timing – when was the asset acquired – and not an issue of ownership.