A law suit was filed prior to marriage but setteled after the marriage, are the proceeds of the suit community property in california?

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A law suit was filed prior to marriage but setteled after the marriage, are the proceeds of the suit community property in california?

Asked on June 8, 2009 under Family Law, California

Answers:

B. B., Member, New Jersey Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

I'm not a California lawyer, and divorce laws vary somewhat from one state to the next.  More importantly, there are more facts needed to answer this question reliably, and you should consult an attorney in your area.  One place to find counsel is our website, http://attorneypages.com

In most states there would be two basic questions to consider.  First, what was done with the suit proceeds?  If they are put into an account that also has marital (community property) funds, this often means that the suit proceeds are "commingled" and become community property, since it's impossible to say whether money taken out of the account, from that point on, are "settlement dollars" or "non-settlement dollars."  If the suit proceeds are kept separate, then it may depend on what the settlement was for.  Many states make personal injury recoveries, for pain and suffering, the sole property of the victim, no matter when they are received.


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