WHAT IS ‘QUASI-COMMUNITY PROPERTY?’
If you’re reading this, you likely already know that California is a community property state. “Community property” refers to the assets that a couple earned or acquired, either separately or together, during the marriage. There are some exceptions, such as inheritances and gifts that remain separate as long as they don’t get commingled with the couple’s community property.
Under state law, each spouse owns one-half of this community property. That means that if they divorce, they can each walk away with an equal share. Of course, they can reach a different agreement either through their negotiations during the divorce process or based on a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement that’s already in place.
Some California couples have what is known as “quasi-community property.” That refers to assets earned or acquired by either or both of you while you were living in another state that would be considered community property had you gotten it while living in California.
If you’re divorcing here in California, all of your quasi-community property is considered community property for the purposes of your divorce. That means that if you and your spouse lived in New York or another non-community property state during part of your marriage and you earned a considerable amount of money during that time while they took a break from their career, your spouse is still entitled to half of those earnings in the divorce.
Determining how various types of property are addressed under state law is one of the first steps to working towards a fair settlement in a divorce. Your family law attorney can provide more information and help you pursue a settlement that will put you in the best possible position to move forward with your life.