A lot of assets and debts can be acquired over the course of a marriage. Often, the longer a marriage, the more complicated it becomes to divide property in a divorce. California’s laws often increase the complexity of the situation because of the requirement to divide the value of the community property that’s involved evenly. When facing this challenge, you need the help of a Huntington Beach property division lawyer.
The team at Quinn & Dworakowski, LLP, can answer all of your financial questions that come with dividing property in a divorce. They have been successfully representing clients in California for years, ensuring their property and assets are fairly protected during a divorce.
The aim of property division under California law is for even distribution between divorcing parties based on the value of their property. Whereas most states implement equitable distribution, California is one of nine states that operate under community property rules. In Huntington Beach, California, property, which includes both assets and debts, should be an even 50/50 divide based on valuation. This is regardless of who initiated the divorce or the underlying reasons for the divorce.
The property that belongs to the spouses will first need to be divided into two categories:
A major component of determining the property division is financial disclosures. These must be done properly, or it could be seen as trying to hide assets from the process. That is a serious issue that could result in complications for every aspect of the divorce, from child custody to spousal support. Out of fairness, both parties need to be able to see a full accounting of the property involved.
There can be some dispute regarding the categorization of property, which could eventually lead to court involvement. However, once everything is properly categorized, the division of community property must be equal based on value. In many cases, larger assets, such as a house, may need to be sold, and then the proceeds split in order to reach an equal division.
Your divorce lawyer will be crucial during the property division process to ensure you have the experienced representation you will need to get a favorable outcome. Our property division law firm can help set expectations regarding what you may be able to expect as a result of the property division. We will fiercely advocate for your interests while representing you through either negotiations or in court.
The process of property division is unfamiliar to most people, and having an experienced legal professional can be valuable even if the situation is not a contentious one. You will want to make sure that proper procedure is being followed and that the agreement, which should also include spousal support, child custody, and child support, is in line with what the court will approve.
A: For many people, a house will be the largest asset that is addressed during property division. There are a few different ways that it could be handled, depending on what works for your situation. Most of the time, the house is sold, and the proceeds are then divided between the divorcing couple.
In some cases, one of the spouses may want to keep the house and buy out the other. This may be possible if the community property is enough to allow for the property to still be divided evenly. There are also some situations where the house is temporarily shared while the children are younger and then sold once they reach a certain age.
A: Generally, inheritance is not going to be included in the community property. However, there are some situations where that may not be the case if that property has been commingled with community property. For instance, if a house was gifted, but upgrades and maintenance were done with community property, then it may be considered community property.
A: A judge may need to sign off on a finalized separation agreement to make sure that it is consistent with the law, but if a couple is amicably able to negotiate the agreement, then they may have more control over how the property is evenly divided.
A: In general, community property is going to include all the property that was acquired during the marriage, regardless of who funded it or whose name is on a title. Separate property is usually property that was owned before the marriage, was gifted, or was inherited, so long as it wasn’t mixed with community property.
The complexity created by California’s community property laws can often be unexpected, and trying to reach an equal split of property can be challenging to achieve. It’s difficult to understand what assets will need to be sold, what investments will need to be cashed out, and what debts can be divided up.
Quinn & Dworakowski, LLP is a Huntington Beach property division law firm and can support you through the process of dividing your property in a divorce. Our experience with complex divorces means that you can be confident your interests will be skillfully pursued. Contact us today, and we can discuss property division and your divorce.
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