Property in trust left to husband in a trust, does the spouse of 33 years have any claim to house if divorcing ?
5 attorney answers
The house cannot be in the trust and also have it be true that"Mother in law as the title holder of property." That said, f the house was not paid for by community funds, then it remains SP.
This is why prenuptial agreements are a truly good thing
This is general advice. You are anonymous. If you PM me i won’t know what it’s about.
Yes. California divides property between community property and separate property. (There is another category of quasi-community property, but I won’t address that here.). Basically, half of the community property is owned by one spouse and half by the other. However, separate property is only owned by one spouse — thus, the word “separate” meaning not part of the community-owned property. Inherited property is separate property (unless company-mingled, such as inherited money put into a bank account full of community money.) With real estate, you don’t have a co-mingling argument very often, if ever. Instead, you have an argument that you are entitled to half of the increase in property value for the period of the marriage. But the actual property itself remains the separate property of the spouse who inherited it.
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Generally, inherited property is separate property, and not community property, in California and belongs to the spouse who inherited the property. But if community property is used on the property, then a partial community property interest could attach. The situation which you describe is very much fact driven and requires careful analysis by an attorney experienced in California community property law. Typically, these are divorce lawyers. I suggest that you consult with one.
Your post on this website does not explain enough facts that may be helpful to your cause of action, so please see a PROBATE LTIGATION ATTORNEY with all your facts (and care management issues/schedule) to obtain a viable summary about your possible options. Possibly the information or facts can support various options presented by Attorney Jeremy Ofseyer, Esq. in his article drafting split interest gifts in the current issue of the T&E article of the Cal Bar.
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Generally, if separate property and ultimately no community contributions by you, then no obligation and thus no exposure to divorce proceedings. California law defines community property as any asset acquired or income earned by a married person while living with a spouse. Separate property is defined as anything acquired by a spouse before the marriage, during the marriage by gift, devise, or bequest, and after the parties separate. However I'd consult with a lawyer to review all documents and surrounding circumstances in person--don't rely solely on information from this forum as a "quick-fix" resolution.
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