Division and valuation of property are among the primary considerations in a divorce proceeding. Regarding property, people often think that division of assets in a divorce must be equal because of California’s no-fault divorce law. However, spouses can and do walk away with far less (or far more) than an equal division of assets. Property acquired before the marriage can be a determining factor in this instance.
Ordinarily, it is not difficult to determine whether a particular asset is community or separate property. However, certain types of assets can pose unique problems in this regard, including a business that one spouse owned before marriage and both spouses worked on during the marriage, or property that belonged to one spouse before marriage but was shared during the relationship.
California law does not require an “in kind” division of the community property, which would mean you would have to divide each physical object. All that the law requires is that the net value of the assets received by each spouse must be equal. Thus, it is not uncommon for one spouse to be awarded the family residence, with the other spouse receiving the family business and investment real estate, as long as each spouse gets assets that are equivalent in value. Since the total net value of the assets being received by each spouse is equal, such a division is proper.
Community property, in California, is defined as any asset acquired or income earned by a married person while living with a spouse. Separate property is defined as anything acquired by a spouse before the marriage, during the marriage by gift, devise, or bequest, and after the parties separate. The law requires that the community estate be divided equally if there is no written agreement requiring a particular division of property. This means that from the total fair market value of the community assets, the joint obligations of the parties are subtracted, yielding the net community estate. Unless agreed otherwise, each spouse must receive half of the net community estate.
If you have a question regarding Family Law in Los Angeles please contact us at (818) 926-4420 or visit the Family Law section on our website at Law Offices of Anat Resnik. Call today and we will connect you with Anat Resnik, an experienced, aggressive, affordable Divorce and Family Law Attorney in Encino. After you have spoken with our Los Angeles Family Law attorney, we can schedule you a free face to face appointment to discuss your circumstances. If you have questions or are considering any aspect of filing for Divorce, a Paternity issues, Child Custody and Visitation, Spousal Support & Alimony, etc. we can help! Call us now at(818) 926-4420. We look forward to hearing from you and assisting you with any and all family law needs.