During a divorce, emotional tensions are often overwhelming. Reaching a fair division of property requires a businesslike non-confrontational atmosphere. Meaningless court battles over assets often do little more than waste the property in dispute. This means that when it comes to dividing your property you need precision layering, and when necessary, strategic litigation. The San Francisco based Bay Area Firm of Jones & Devoy takes pride in offering practical legal solutions for property division so you can enjoy your fair share of your assets.
California is a “community property state.” This means that the all income and property earned by you and your spouse during the marriage usually belongs 50/50 to each of you. Property that either you or your spouse acquired before marriage, or after separation, is separate property and belongs to the spouse who earned or acquired it. However, there many are exceptions to these rules and determining exactly how assets and debts are divided can become very complicated very quickly.
At the San Francisco Law Offices of Jones & Devoy our attorneys are experienced at valuing and dividing almost every type of asset. With such experience, our Bay Area attorneys will fearlessly represent you in your divorce or dissolution to make sure that you receive your fair share of property from your marriage or domestic partnership so that you can get on with the rest of your life.
FAQ on Property and Asset Division During a Divorce or Dissolution:
1) What is an “asset” that can be divided?
An “asset” that needs to be divided between divorcing spouses includes almost anything that has a dollar value including:
- Personal property such as antiques, vehicles, art, jewelry and furniture.
- Any kind of real estate such as a residence, vacation property, commercial property or fractional interest in property.
- Stocks, bonds, stock options, and all types of private investment
- Retirement accounts, such as pensions, 401ks, and IRAs
- Family-owned businesses or interests in professional practices
- Any kind of debt including credit cards, personal loan, mortgages, and taxes
2) What if we cannot agree on “who gets what”?
Jones & Devoy will always try to negotiate a settlement that is fair for you. However, if the other side is unreasonable or unwilling to negotiate we will petition a judge and ask that either:
- You be awarded the asset in dispute;
- That the asset in dispute be sold and that you are compensated for your fair share of the item;
- That we allow the other party to keep the item only after they pay you your fair share of what the asset is worth.
3) What if I do not know what all the assets are or where all the assets are located?
Under California law both spouses have a duty to disclose all assets and values through a formal disclosure process. Unfortunately, some spouses take the law into their own hands and will try to hide assets. If this is the case then the San Francisco family law attorneys of Jones & Devoy will take your spouse to Court making them divulge where the community assets are and ask the judge to make the other side pay your legal bill.
4) Are assets always divided “50/50”?
Although California is a community property state there are situations where property will not be divided 50/50. This can occur in many different ways. For instance, if the property in question was acquired with separate property such as one’s inheritance, then the division may be unequal. Also, a division could be unequal if:
- A Court determines that one spouse or domestic partner has wrongfully hidden or failed to disclose an asset;
- There exists some prior agreement between the parties such as a prenuptial or domestic partner agreement;
- The parties mutually agree that a 50/50 division is not necessary;
Knowing these basics to property and asset division is the first step in the process to making sure that you get your fair share. Let the San Francisco based Bay Area Law Firm of Jones & Devoy help you through the rest of the process so that you know that your interests are protected and that you are able to enjoy your assets rather than giving them to your attorney or soon to be ex-spouse.