What happens during divorce in CA state if Wife has more bank savings than husband?

Asked over 1 year ago - San Mateo, CA

After marring for almost 9-10 years, one of our family friend is considering separation with her husband. Right now they live together in an apartment and doesn't have any property. She has a legal question.Husband and wife are employed and maintain separate bank accounts.Recently husband finished his MBA and started earning more money than wife. Wife makes almost half of husband's salary. Wife supported him during his MBA studies.Husband started showing true colors and wanted separation for unknown reasons.Husband frequently sends money over seas and maintain low bank balances in US.
Where as Wife has been saving her hard earned money in her US bank for future
She is wondering what will happen to her bank savings if husband initiates divorce?
What are her options to protect 100% savings

Attorney answers (3)

  1. Howard M Lewis

    Pro

    Contributor Level 20

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    Lawyer agrees

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    Answered . California is a community property state, the rest of the issues are very important to sit down with a local San mateo attny and discuss the specifics, who earned what when and how it was spent etc. take care.

    Legal disclaimer: The response given is not intended to create, nor does it create an ongoing duty to respond to... more
  2. John Noah Kitta

    Pro

    Contributor Level 19

    1

    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . It does not matter what account the money is held in, it is divided equally 50-50. If he made inappropriate disbursements from the account overseas that she did not approve of and did not benefit the community he will owe one half that money back to her even though it no longer exists in the bank account. The court will make an adjustment. If accounting becomes difficult it may be necessary to hire am accountant of CPA to unravel all the true facts.
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    This participating Attorney does not warrant any information provided, nor are we creating an Attorney-Client... more
  3. Donald Frederick Conviser

    Contributor Level 19

    Answered . Wife's earnings during the marriage before separation are Community Property in which Husband has a 50% community interest. The fact that the parties had separate bank accounts is immaterial. The money Husband sent overseas is community property, or if he gave that money away without Wife's knowledge or consent, he violated his fiduciary duty to the community and owes 1/2 of those funds to Wife. Loans to finance Husband's MBA education would likely be held to be Husband's separate obligation. Wife may be entitled to Spousal Support. Wife should retain an experienced Family Law Attorney to advise and represent her.

    Please note that this answer does not constitute legal advice, and should not be relied on, as each situation is... more

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Divorce

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