Family Law Blog

Some Basic Facts About CA Property Division After a Divorce

Thursday, January 07, 2016

When a divorcing couple divides their property and debts, they need to put a plan into motion that works for them both -- or ask for court facilitation.

In most divorce cases -- when mediated by an attorney -- property division is usually an agreeable situation. Couples can normally split property up fairly and without too many problems or snags.

When dividing property, you must remember that all shared debts and community property can not be fully divided until a judge has issued a final order. So, even if you both verbally agree on which items you will split, such an agreement isn't viable until a judge has it in writing and signs off on it.

Further, in the state of California, it's just as important to consider that all property, assets, and debts acquired during the marriage fall under common property laws, and they should be divided equally anyway.

Coming up with a "net share" of all of your assets will help you split them equally. Do this by adding up all of your property's values and subtracting the total amount of debt. The remaining number is your total "net value," which is the amount to be divided between the two of you.

It is also possible to use your debt to balance out someone getting more than their shared half.

An example of this concerns one person getting a house, which has obvious and intrinsic equity and value. Then, according to courts.ca:

If one spouse or domestic partner is taking something with a high value, like a house in which there is equity (value), it may be possible to equalize or balance out the division by giving that spouse or domestic partner the credit card debt.

It is necessary to use your resources when dividing property. Always work with an attorney to ensure that all of what's your stays in your hands. The last thing that you want to do when dividing your property is to do it without legal counsel.

For more information on how we can help you with all of your family law needs, please contact us anytime. Remember, family law can go one of two ways, we're prepared for both.

What to Do with the House during the Divorce

Wednesday, April 01, 2015

The marital home is one of the most contested assets during a divorce. It's rare that spouses can easily agree on what to do with the marital home.

However, you might find that the decision that you make is not entirely in your financial well-being. Very often, persons, especially women, make the decision to retain the house during the divorce. The reasons for this are very often emotional. Women may have a deep emotional connection to the home, and may not want to dispose of it. Besides, if there are children involved, women may believe that the children will prefer living in the home, and that the sense of continuity that this will provide them will make the divorce easier on them.

That may be a valid reason, but it doesn't change the fact that retaining the house could be a big mistake and a financial drain. Keep in mind that after the divorce, you are likely to have different financial circumstances from now. You will have a single income, and have to maintain all of your expenses on very limited income. Even with alimony payments and child support, you may find that the money simply isn't enough to pay for the upkeep of a home.

Remember, maintaining the house is expensive, and apart from utilities, and repair expenses, you're also looking at a variety of taxes that have to be paid regularly. When the house is linked to a mortgage, then you have mortgage payments to make as well.

Instead, consider disposing of the home, and selling it off. You and your spouse can divide the proceeds. This is one of the more convenient, and cleanest ways of dividing the house. However, selling the house is not without its problems. There may be tax complications to consider. Speak to a divorce lawyer in San Jose before you make any major decisions about division of assets.