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Community Property Division in a Carlsbad Divorce isn’t Just Dividing All Assets in Half

On Behalf of | Sep 15, 2019 | Divorce

Community property division in a Carlsbad divorce isn’t just dividing all assets in half and giving each former spouse their 50% share.  Here in California, community property is to be divided equally and equitably between the parties.  However, this doesn’t mean you sell every asset, pay off every debt and divide the remaining money equally between the parties.  Part of the expertise and art of divorce and family law is the ability to fairly and equitably offset specific assets and liabilities in order to reach a fair community property settlement.

What if one of the parties wants to keep or remain living in the family home?  How do you handle closely-held business interests or valuation of professional practices? How do you offset one spouse’s community interest in an asset without having to sell it?

For example, if the former husband and wife own a successful and viable business you often do not wish to sell that business.  It may be difficult to receive fair compensation for what the business is worth, and part of the value of the business is based upon the unique individuals who are running it.

In these cases the property division may need to ensure that the ownership interests are clearly defined and a proper valuation is in place, while ensuring the continuity of the successful business.

In some cases of a small family business the parties respect the “Goodwill” each brings to the table and the effective contribution they make to the ongoing business.  Each former spouse is able to continue their active roles in the company.  Or perhaps in this situation the settlement agreement might contain a “phasing out” of one of the parties over time supported by appropriate compensation for lost income as well as their portion of the business asset’s valuation.

One of the parties may need to move on if they cannot work together after the divorce.  In this case, 50% of the valuation must be “offset” by other assets of the couple including equity in the family home, investments such as stocks or bonds or a promissory note secured by a continuing interest in the business itself.

What do you do when Community property division in a Carlsbad divorce involves complex assets such as:

  • Business ownership or professional practice
  • Multiple properties or investment real estate
  • Investment accounts
  • Retirement vehicles such as a 401(k) or a pension

Our experienced Certified Family Law Specialists work to protect your interests while developing a community property settlement that fairly and equitably compensates each party without disrupting on going business operations or investments that have not yet come to maturity.

Community property division in a Carlsbad divorce case requires attorneys with extensive experience and legal skill, as well as effective negotiation, mediation and trial skills.  The lawyers at Burke & Domercq have received recognition from major legal industry sources.  We have a proven track record across decades here in Carlsbad of achieving results for our clients, especially in complex cases involving business ownership, investments and substantial assets.