Is California a Community Property or Equitable Distribution State?

May 9, 2023
By Alternative Divorce Solutions

Equitable Distribution versus Community Property

Many states follow equitable distribution laws during a divorce. In these states, property acquired by the couple during the course of the marriage belongs to the spouse who earned it.

During a divorce, the property will be divided between the spouses equitably, meaning in a fair way. There is no set rule for determining who receives what or how much. The court would consider a variety of different factors, such as the earning contributions of each spouse, if one spouse stayed at home to raise the children, and the earning potential of each. A husband or wife could receive between 1/3 and 2/3 of the marital property.

California Is a Community Property State

On the other hand, some states follow community property rules. California is one of these states.

According to the laws of community property, spouses are deemed to equally own all income and assets earned or acquired during the marriage. This means both spouses equally own all money earned by either during the marriage, even if only one spouse was working. Additionally, all property acquired during the course of the union with “community” money is considered owned equally by the couple, regardless of who actually bought it.

How Is Debt Divided in Divorce in CA?

Additionally, in a community property state, equal ownership also applies to debts. This means both spouses split debts equally, even if only one person borrowed the money. These debts can include unpaid balances on credit cards, car loans, and home mortgages.

Consult a Mediator Regarding Division of Marital Property

If you’re unsure how your assets will be divided during a divorce, talk to one of our skilled mediators at Alternative Divorce Solutions. Our firm has branches located in Newport Beach, Long Beach, and Los Angeles. We are also a leader in the industry and can offer our clients flat fee pricing, a streamlined process, and courteous service.

Our founding attorney, Lani Baron, created the firm to help families afford a better way to divorce. We understand this may be a stressful time for you and your family, and we are proud to be able to offer you a team of attorney-mediators who can help you resolve your family law issues with compassion and skill. Let us see what we can do for you and your family.

Contact us online or call 949-368-2121 today to schedule a free case consultation with us.


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