Financial problems are one of the most common reasons for the failure of marriage. We see this a lot at our law firm, the Law Offices of Kenneth U. Reyes, P.C. In addition to complicating the marriage itself, finances can also add a great amount of conflict to the divorce. For example, there may be a dispute over which assets are considered marital property (and therefore subject to division) and which ones are considered separate property. Or, there may be a situation where one spouse earns substantially more than the other spouse and controls most of the community assets.
At the Law Offices of Kenneth U. Reyes, P.C., we have Los Angeles divorce lawyers who can help you ensure that your assets are protected during the property division process. In addition to being a Certified Family Law Specialist (CFLS), Attorney Kenneth U. Reyes is also a former Certified Public Accountant (CPA). With a decade of experience as a CPA, Mr. Reyes brings in-depth, professional understanding of the financial complexities involved in property division. Our firm has extensive experience handling high-net worth divorce cases.
When it comes to property division between divorcing spouses, the state of California does not discriminate as to who brought in the bacon during the marriage. Any property accumulated during the marriage is considered community property. Even if only one spouse did the work to earn the money, the income is seen as belonging to both spouses, as long as it was accumulated during the marriage. (That would be from the date of the marriage to the date of separation.) This means that if you are a high-earning spouse such as a physician, dentist, or business professional and you accumulate substantial assets through retirement plans, real estate, or intangible assets, your spouse may be entitled to a distribution of half of the value of the community assets. However, in practice, the distribution of community assets and debts does not always result in an equal distribution.
Our family lawyer will aggressively assert your rights to your community and separate property, either through settlement negotiations or trial. Our goal is to help you keep and preserve as much of your assets as you can when you go through divorce.
It is common for us to retain experts who can provide accurate valuation of assets—such as professional practices, businesses, and real estate—that would be most favorable to our client's position. This allows us to properly prepare the clients' cases for trial, which is especially helpful if the case does not settle.
The division of community property and debts can get complicated when you take into account a spouse's right to reimbursement, credits, transmutations, and quasi-community properties. It is important to hire legal counsel that is thoroughly familiar with the numbers. There are numerous presumptions under the California Family Code and case law that define the characterization of community assets and debts.
Contact the Law Offices of Kenneth U. Reyes, P.C. to schedule a consultation with one of our knowledgeable attorneys!