Pursuing A Fair Distribution Of Marital Assets And Debts
If you are going through a divorce, you may have heard many things from friends and family members about California’s community property system. Because each case is unique, however, it is important to talk to an experienced lawyer about your specific situation.
At the Law Offices of Susan H. Witting, we provide personalized guidance and diligent representation in community property division matters. Thousand Oaks community property attorney Susan H. Witting, a certified family law specialist, has handled these cases since 1983.
Identifying, Valuing and Dividing Community Property
The first two steps in the community property division process are the identification and valuation of community property. Identification means locating all of the assets owned by either spouse and classifying them as community property or separate property.
- Community property: Generally, assets acquired by either spouse during a marriage — no matter whose name they are in — are considered community property. Exceptions include inheritances, gifts and bequests. Debts can also be considered community debts.
- Separate property: Assets that are not community property are the separate property of each spouse. If separate assets are sold during the marriage and the proceeds are used to buy other assets, those assets may or may not be considered separate.
Valuation is a very important step in many divorce cases. A bank account may have a fixed dollar value, but a house, business or stock option may be more difficult to accurately value. Ms. Witting is highly experienced at addressing complex asset division and valuation issues.
Once the community property is identified and valued, it is normally divided on a roughly equal basis. There are several factors that can influence this distribution, but in California, non-financial issues like infidelity are not relevant to community property division.
Contact a California Marital Property Attorney at 805-777-7371
Our offices are conveniently located right off the 101 freeway in Thousand Oaks, with plentiful free parking. If you need assistance dividing community property in your divorce, call us at 805-777-7371 or e-mail us to schedule a consultation with attorney Susan H. Witting.
California property division resources: