If I own a rental property (acquired prior to marriage), how would it be split in a divorce?

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If I own a rental property (acquired prior to marriage), how would it be split in a divorce?

Let’s say, prior to marriage:My equity in the home = 80%I rent it out and the profits are on reported on the “married filing jointly” tax forms.If I get a divorce, would I be surrending half my rental property to the ex? I live in CA.

Asked on May 26, 2009 under Real Estate Law, California

Answers:

MD, Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

It depends.  California is a community property state.  There are some separate property laws, as well, but keep in mind, if you are commingling any of the profits (you can tell by married filing jointly), commingling any expenses, you are using any of your income from a job to put monies into the apartment, you deposit rents in your joint bank account, or in any bank account that monies from it are used as marital assets, you may be surrendering a portion of your property to your wife.

To better understand this, you actually go through an accounting stage during your divorce proceedings, where all of this is sorted out.  Contact a divorce attorney in California who can help you sort out your funds.  Bear in mind, if you are separated from your wife (there are criteria for that), any monies you make are not considered part of the marital estate. 

Try www.attorneypages.com and then check his or her record at www.calbar.ca.gov under attorney search.


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