Did you buy the property prior to marriage? Is your spouse on the mortgage?
This and a number of other important facts would need to be assessed by an
attorney. In a dissolution the court has before it all property for
consideration in its division, separate as well as community property. Your
task will be to marshal the facts to show, pursuant to case law and the
various statutes, that your property is your separate property and should
not be divided.
Brook A. Goddard
Goddard Wetherall Wonder, PSC
155 - 108th Avenue N.E., #700
Bellevue, WA 98004
(425) 453-9200 (office)
(425) 453-0528 (facsimile)
Privileged & Confidential Attorney/Client Communication &/or Work Product:
This email is confidential and privileged. Any distribution or copying of
this communication by unintended recipients is prohibited. Please delete
this email immediately if you have received it in error, and notify the
sender by telephone.
It might be your separate property but if you paid for it with community funds, it could be considered community. Titles on property are not proof that the property is your separate property. If you want to make it your separate property, you and your spouse should do a Community and Separate Property Agreement, which states what is yours, what is hers/his, and what is community (both of yours), and put in language that it is your intent that this property pass to your spouse upon your death (what about divorce?).
My response does not constitute legal advice but is provided for the purposes of advertising and education. Please contact a local attorney if you wish to obtain confidential legal counsel.
An asset bought during the marriage is presumed to be community property, regardless of how title is held.
However, it's a rebuttable presumption. If you can document that the source of funds was your separate account from before marriage, and that you didn't mix the funds in that account with earnings during the marriage, the property would likely be viewed by a judge as your separate property. That interpretation would be strengthened by your spouse having signed a quitclaim deed to you. Even then, the court has authority to divide separate property in a dissolution action, but it rarely does so (making an unequal division of community property instead.)
If this answer is helpful or the best answer, please say so. This is for general information purposes only, and not as legal advice for any individual case or situation. Legal disclaimer: In accordance with the Avvo community guidelines, this communication does not constitute "legal advice", nor does it form an attorney-client relationship. No information disclosed in these questions and opinions will prohibit this lawyer from representing a different client in the matter.
Sign up to receive a 10-part series of useful information and legal advice about the divorce process.