Dividing Marital Property In Divorce
California is a community property state. Except as otherwise provided by statute, all property acquired during the marriage and before separation is community property. Exceptions include gifts and inheritance. Absent valid agreement, community property is divided equally between the parties in a divorce.
Property acquired before marriage and after separation is separate property.
The Complexities Of Dividing Marital Property
Division can become complicated when, for instance, one or both parties have a pension or other retirement accounts, stock options or their own business. Family law provides a number of rules, both in cases and statutes, that govern division of property in a divorce. While the title in which the property is held creates a presumption regarding whether it is a community or separate property, it may not be determinative. Family law may require a family lawyer to look at the time of acquisition, whether any agreements regarding ownership exist, whether one party was advantaged by a change in title, the method of acquisition and/or the source of funds.
Property typically included in the division of marital assets includes:
- Homes and other real estate holdings
- Personal assets such as jewelry and artwork
- Cars and other types of vehicles
- Retirement accounts
- Business interests
Attorney Wise uses forensic accounting methods to locate, identify and valuate assets. She is also careful to make sure that tax implications are factored into valuations.