Comprehensive, Effective

Family Solutions

3 common misconceptions about divorce property division

On Behalf of | Apr 8, 2024 | Property Division

Divorce is a complex and emotional journey. With emotions running high, many divorcing parties end up believing wrong or inaccurate ideas about how the process goes. This can potentially result in misinformed decisions and jeopardized rights and interests.

One aspect of divorce where many misconceptions arise is property division. Some false impressions people have include the following:

Only physical assets count during the division

Some people mistakenly believe that only physical assets such as real estate, cars and furniture are subject to division in a divorce. In reality, courts can divide all types of assets and liabilities, including retirement accounts, businesses, stock options and debts.

Separate properties are absolutely excluded from division

While it is true that separate properties, which are assets each spouse owned before the marriage or received as a gift or inheritance, are generally not subject to property division in a divorce, there can be exceptions. A common exception is when a separate property becomes commingled with marital property and may be subject to the division.

The petitioning party is at an advantage

Simply being the first to file for divorce does not give that person an advantage in how courts will divide assets. In California, courts follow the 50/50 rule in splitting marital assets in a divorce. This means courts make decisions based on evenness and the law, not on who filed it first.

If you are going through a divorce, it is advisable to seek guidance from a knowledgeable divorce attorney who can help you understand how division of property works in a divorce to get accurate and personalized advice and help you make informed decisions.