Asset Division Attorneys in Livermore, California
Out of all the different types of cases courts hear, divorce cases are among the most complicated and emotional. For many individuals, going through a divorce can be one of the most difficult and trying moments in life. The process is made all the more difficult when the time comes to divide property between the divorcing couple. Divorce is never easy, but it is easier to navigate with the help of a compassionate attorney who can lead you through each step with your best interest at heart.
Our team of experienced and compassionate divorce attorneys at Crumpley & Crumpley PC is dedicated to helping clients understand asset division issues and protect their interests in the divorce process. As dedicated attorneys, we proudly represent people seeking a divorce in Livermore, California, as well as Danville, Hayward, Dublin, Castro Valley, Pleasanton, Walnut Creek, San Ramon, and throughout Contra Costa and Alameda Counties.
Community Property vs. Separate Property
Asset division is one of the most asked-about matters during California divorce cases. Most couples are curious as to how the courts would divide their property should the spouses be unable to manage asset distribution alone. California is unique in that it is one of just nine community property states in the country. Learning more about California’s division of property laws in a divorce case could help you and your spouse know what to expect going forward.
California is a community property state, which means that assets attained during the marriage are considered “community property”. Each spouse has an undivided one-half interest, but most of the time, property division is not as simple as chopping everything in half.
Community property can include, but isn’t limited to:
Wages and other income of each spouse
Interest accrued on accounts, pensions, and other financial assets
Real estate assets
Separate property, or non-marital assets, are assets that are not subject to division in a divorce. Examples of separate property include:
Property that spouses acquired before marriage
Property acquired post-dissolution of marriage is also considered separate property. In short, property and assets that predate marriage—unless “transmuted” into community property—are generally off-limits during the divorce process.
Who Determines How Assets are Divided?
Under California law, neither spouse has to prove that there was any misconduct that ended the marriage. This is known as a “no-fault” divorce. The sole requirement to file for a divorce is that the couple claims that they are unable to get along, commonly referred to as “irreconcilable differences.”
Simply because a divorce is based on irreconcilable differences does not mean that the couple can easily agree on how they should divide all of their assets. If the couple can agree, the divorce is considered “uncontested.”. Though uncontested divorces are often amicable, there is still a need for an official agreement that details how everything is to be divided. This agreement is known as a “marital dissolution agreement”, and it usually covers the following:
Division of property and debts
Child custody and child support (if you have minor or dependent children)
If the couple cannot come to an agreement on the division of their shared assets, the divorce is considered to be “contested.” Such disagreements in a contested divorce can range from simple disagreements in some areas to sharp disagreements in every aspect.
Factors Considered in Asset Division
California does not have a specific list of factors for the court to consider when determining how marital property will be divided. What this means is that judges have a good deal of discretion when determining what factors to consider in each individual property division case. Typically, judges will consider the following:
The age of both parties
The duration of the marriage
Each spouse's present and future earning capacity
The property owned by each spouse
The sources and manner in which property was acquired
Asset Division Attorneys
in Livermore, California
Getting a divorce is not something to take lightly, especially when it comes to dividing up marital assets. If you are facing a divorce in Livermore or anywhere else in California, our attorneys at Crumpley & Crumpley PC can help. Our team of experienced, empathetic lawyers has over 25 years of combined experience in helping clients navigate the complex area of asset division during a divorce. Contact us today to set up a one-on-one case evaluation.