Credit card points and airline miles that the spouses acquired during the marriage are marital property that should be equitably divided in a divorce. Points and miles that one party acquired before the marriage are separate property. These will not be divided in an uncontested divorce in Jefferson County, or anywhere else in Alabama.
A credit card company or airline company may have rules that the points or miles can only be awarded to one individual, usually the individual whose name is on the credit card account for the points or who bought the ticket from the airline. The other spouse or their divorce attorney can effectively argue that despite the company’s policy, the other spouse deserves to receive the value of the marital asset. The other spouse or their divorce attorney may request evidence from the card issuer or airline to prove the value of the points or miles.
Alternatively, the spouses may come to a conclusion about how they want to divide the points or miles in a marital settlement agreement (MSA) that they present to the court. The spouses should review and sign the MSA before providing it to the court. The spouses may also have agreed about the division of points or miles in a prenuptial agreement or post-nuptial agreement.
One spouse can complicate matters by attempting to have the other spouse taken off their credit card while the parties are still married. The spouses can discuss if it is OK for the first spouse to do this. The other spouse should still get the value of the credit card points or airline miles. When you call a Birmingham divorce attorney for a consultation, they can go over these things, so you know what to expect in your divorce.
The exception to this rule is if the spouses separate and one requests that the court issue an order of legal separation. One of the consequences of legal separation is the spouses becoming financially independent from one another. Points or miles that one spouse acquires after the date of legal separation will be their separate property. These points or miles will not be divided. The court will not require the spouse who acquires them to compensate the other spouse for them. If you have any questions, you can always get a consultation with a local divorce attorney in Alabaster or wherever you are living.
Attorney Steven A. Harris regularly blogs in the areas of family law, bankruptcy, and real estate closings on this website. He is always available in any of the firm’s offices or by phone anytime for a consultation. Mr. Harris tries to provide informative information to the public in easily digestible formats. Hopefully you enjoyed this article and feel free to supply any feedback. We appreciate our readers and love to hear from you!