If my husband own his house before our marriage, am I entitled to any portion of the home?

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If my husband own his house before our marriage, am I entitled to any portion of the home?

We live in a community property state.

Asked on January 23, 2016 under Family Law, California

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Typically, any property owned before the marriage remains separate property. However, if your husband added your name to title during marriage for any reason, then a "transmutation" has occurred and the house is now community property, subject to a reimbursement to him for the equity that he had in the property as of the date of the transmutation.
Additionally, even if the home was acquired before marriage title is still in your husband's name only but during the marriage the mortgage is paid down with community funds. the community estate acquires a legal, reimbursable, interest in what would be otherwise be entirely the separate property. The idea is that joint funds are being used to benefit a separate property interest. The same is true of any jont funds used to maintain, repair or improve the property.
Since this can all get a bit complicated, you really should consult directly with a local divorce attorney..
 


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