Complex Marital Property Division

How Marital Property is Divided in California

At The Buncher Law Corporation, our divorce attorneys are experienced handling all types of issues surrounding complex property valuation and asset division. In handling such issues, we work with highly qualified experts in the field of taxation, accounting, and business evaluation to best represent your interests. Several factors can add complexity to the division of marital property. We partner with leading forensic accountants and business evaluators to resolve complex marital property issues.

Differentiating Between Separate & Community Property

As the length of a marriage increases, property owned by one spouse prior to the marriage tends to become commingled with community property. If the origins of the property cannot be traced, it will be presumed to be community property. Similarly, if a business is started prior to marriage but continued during marriage, at least some of the business’s value will likely become community property if it increases in value during the marriage.

More complex issues arise when:

• Properties are refinanced during marriage placing title in both parties' names
• Cash is taken out of the properties
• The properties are put in a joint trust during marriage
• A spouse attempts to conceal or hide assets

If houses or rental properties are owned prior to marriage but community property is used to finance renovations, improvements, or mortgage payments, the community will typically acquire at least partial interest in those properties.

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