In California, community property is any property acquired or earned by either party during the marriage or domestic partnership – with some specific exceptions. Inheritances and gifts, as well as present or future income resulting from the inheritance or gift, remains separate property and belongs to the acquiring spouse. In some instances, damages from personal injury actions remain separate property. Additionally, earnings that are acquired after a legal separation are characterized as personal property (caveat – check with your attorney).
It is essential for the property in the marital estate to be properly valuated before it can be divided. The spouses may come to an agreement as to the value of the marital property, and this can ultimately save much time and cost. Indeed, the court prefers and encourages the parties to come to their own valuation. If the parties cannot agree, the court will make the final decision based on the evidence presented.
Once again it is to be noted that the court has broad discretionary power to participate in all aspects related to the dissolution, including the division. The court, of course, will always seek an equal division of property:
Assets vary and may include:
The division of marital property has one basic goal: each spouse is to get an equal share of the net value of all community property assets. Division may be creative; one spouse may receive the home while the other receives the business – as long as it is equal in value.
Division of marital property may be a very difficult and involved process, or it may be relatively simple and quick, depending on the circumstances. The San Diego Divorce Lawyers at Yelman & Associate have helped countless clients in all aspects of their divorce, from the initial consultation to the separation and finally, the official dissolution. Additionally, after the dissolution, modifications may be requested. We have the experience and knowledge to help you in a most compassionate, caring and professional manner. For a complimentary phone consultation with a Yelman & Associates Family Lawyer, call (619) 282-1107, or (760)480-8400.
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