California is a community property state, and property you and your spouse acquire together during a marriage is considered shared. Separate property is property you or your spouse either owned prior to the marriage, inherited, or that was specifically gifted to you. It could also include property you individually acquired during the marriage, which was not co-owned.
Depending on the extent of property owned and the couple’s desire to minutely detail property division, settlement can be very involved and complex or relatively simple. In settling property division during divorce, there are a number of financial factors to consider, some of which may include:
- Assets valuation
- 401 K
- Stocks and Bonds
- Filing bankruptcy
- Dissolving a family owned business
- Community property
- Separate property
- Home owned business
- Personal injury recoveries
- Assets acquired prior to the marriage
What constitutes community property and how to divide it between spouses remains the most contested aspect of property division. Because property division has long term and far reaching effects, seeking legal advice is often vital to your future. By hiring a lawyer you can protect what should be rightfully yours. Not only may an attorney help you arrive at concessions and reach a settlement, but you also may find you arrive at decisions quickly and overall save costs. If you and your spouse are unable to agree on how to divide your property, the court will make final decisions. Turning over property division over to the court can result in a long and expensive process.