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San Diego Property Division Lawyers

San Diego Property Division Lawyers: Protecting Your Assets During Divorce

Introduction

CONGRATULATIONS! You finally found Mr. or Ms. Right, the person with whom you’re hoping to spend the rest of your life. But before you say “I do”, there’s an important conversation you need to have – how will you divide your property if, heaven forbid, things don’t work out?You may have heard of, or yourself experienced, horror-divorce stories. They seem to be prevalent and ubiquitous nowadays. Couples fighting tooth and nail over every last asset, racking up massive legal bills in the process. It’s enough to make anyone think twice about getting married in the first place!But it doesn’t have to be that way. With the help of our skilled San Diego property division lawyers at Spodek Law Group, you can protect your assets and ensure a fair split if your marriage ends in divorce. We’ve been helping couples navigate the complex world of property division for over a decade, and we’re here to help you too.

What is Property Division?

When a couple gets divorced in California, they must divide their property and debts. This process is known as property division. In a community property state like California, the general rule is that all property acquired during the marriage is considered community property and must be divided equally between the spouses.However, there are exceptions to this rule. Property that was owned by one spouse before the marriage, or that was acquired by one spouse through gift or inheritance during the marriage, is considered separate property and is not subject to division.Determining what counts as community property vs. separate property can get tricky, especially if assets have been commingled over the course of a long marriage. That’s where our experienced San Diego property division attorneys come in. We can help you untangle your finances and ensure you get your fair share in the divorce.

Common Issues in Property Division

Dividing assets in a divorce is rarely straightforward. There are many factors that can complicate the process, such as:

  • Valuation of assets: Before property can be divided, it must be valued. This can be challenging for assets like businesses, stock options, or collectibles where the value is not readily apparent.
  • Hidden assets: Sometimes, one spouse will attempt to hide assets to avoid having to split them in the divorce. Our attorneys are skilled at uncovering hidden assets and ensuring they are included in the division of property.
  • Separate vs community property: As mentioned, determining whether an asset is separate or community property can be difficult, especially if separate property has been commingled with marital funds. We can help trace the source of funds and make arguments for why certain assets should be considered separate property.
  • Division of debts: Just as assets must be divided in a divorce, so must debts. This includes things like credit card balances, mortgages, and car loans. We’ll make sure debts are divided fairly and that you’re not left shouldering more than your fair share.
  • Retirement accounts: Retirement accounts like 401(k)s and pensions can be some of the most valuable assets in a divorce. Special rules apply to the division of retirement accounts, and we have extensive experience ensuring our clients get their rightful portion.

High Net Worth Divorces

For high net worth individuals, property division can be especially complex. With significant assets at stake, it’s crucial to have an attorney who understands the intricacies of dividing complex property like businesses, real estate portfolios, and offshore accounts.Our San Diego property division lawyers have a proven track record of success in high net worth divorces. We work with a team of experts, including forensic accountants and appraisers, to accurately value and divide complex assets. We’re also skilled negotiators who can often reach a fair settlement without the need for costly litigation.Some of the unique issues we handle in high net worth divorces include:

  • Business valuation and division: If one or both spouses own a business, it will need to be valued and the spouses’ interests divided. We work to ensure businesses are valued accurately and that our clients receive their fair share, whether that means buying out the other spouse’s interest or selling the business and splitting the proceeds.
  • Real estate portfolios: High net worth couples often have extensive real estate holdings that must be divided in divorce. We can help value properties, determine which ones are community vs separate property, and devise a plan for dividing them fairly.
  • Offshore accounts & hidden assets: Wealthy individuals sometimes use offshore accounts and trusts to hide assets from their spouse. Our attorneys are skilled at uncovering these hidden assets and ensuring they are included in the division of property.
  • Prenuptial & postnuptial agreements: Many high net worth couples have prenuptial or postnuptial agreements dictating how property will be divided in the event of divorce. We can review these agreements to ensure they are enforceable and that our clients’ rights are protected.

Alternatives to Litigation

While our San Diego property division attorneys are always prepared to zealously advocate for our clients in court, we understand that litigation isn’t always the best solution. Divorce litigation can be time-consuming, expensive, and emotionally draining for all involved.Fortunately, there are alternatives to traditional litigation that can allow couples to divide their property more amicably and cost-effectively. Some options we often recommend to our clients include:

  • Mediation: In mediation, a neutral third party (the mediator) helps the divorcing couple reach agreements on property division and other divorce-related issues. The mediator doesn’t make decisions but rather facilitates productive conversations and proposes creative solutions. Mediation allows couples to maintain more control over the outcome of their divorce.
  • Collaborative divorce: In a collaborative divorce, each spouse hires their own attorney, and all parties agree to work together to reach a fair settlement without going to court. If either party decides to litigate, the collaborative attorneys must withdraw and the spouses must hire new counsel. This incentivizes everyone to work toward an amicable resolution.
  • Negotiated settlement: Sometimes, divorcing couples are able to reach a property division settlement through informal negotiations between their attorneys. Our skilled negotiators can often achieve better outcomes for our clients than they would likely get in court.

Of course, litigation is sometimes necessary, especially if one spouse is being unreasonable or attempting to hide assets. When litigation is required, you can count on our San Diego property division lawyers to aggressively advocate for your rights in court.

FAQs About Property Division

Q: What’s the difference between community property and separate property?A: Community property is any asset acquired during the marriage, regardless of which spouse acquired it. Separate property is anything that was owned by one spouse before marriage or that was acquired by one spouse alone during the marriage through gift or inheritance. Upon divorce, community property is divided between the spouses while separate property is not.Q: Is California a 50/50 divorce state?A: Yes, California is a community property state, which means that community property is generally divided 50/50 between the spouses in a divorce. However, many factors can impact the final division of assets, such as the existence of a prenuptial agreement or a spouse’s separate property claims.Q: What happens to the family home in a divorce?A: The family home is often one of the most valuable assets in a divorce. If the home was acquired during the marriage, it is generally considered community property and must be divided between the spouses. This can be done by selling the home and splitting the proceeds, or by one spouse buying out the other’s interest. If there are minor children, the court may award the home to the custodial parent to minimize disruption to the children.Q: How are retirement accounts divided in a divorce?A: Retirement accounts are divided using a Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO). A QDRO is a court order that instructs the retirement plan administrator on how to divide the account between the spouses. Specific rules apply to the division of different types of retirement accounts, so it’s important to work with an attorney experienced in QDROs.Q: How long does property division take in a San Diego divorce?A: The timeline for property division depends on the complexity of the assets involved and the willingness of the spouses to cooperate. A simple divorce with few assets may be resolved in a matter of months. A high net worth divorce with complex property and contentious spouses can drag on for a year or more. Our attorneys work efficiently to achieve a fair division of assets in the shortest possible timeframe.

Christine Twomey
Christine Twomey
2024-03-21
Just had my Divorce case settled 2 months ago after having a horrible experience with another firm. I couldn’t be happier with Claire Banks and Elizabeth Garvey with their outstanding professionalism in doing so with Spodek Law Group. Any time I needed questions answered they were always prompt in doing so with all my uncertainties after 30 yrs of marriage.I feel from the bottom of my heart you will NOT be disappointed with either one. Thanks a million.
Brendan huisman
Brendan huisman
2024-03-18
Alex Zhik contacted me almost immediately when I reached out to Spodek for a consultation and was able to effectively communicate the path forward/consequences of my legal issue. I immediately agreed to hire Alex for his services and did not regret my choice. He was able to cover my case in court (with 1 day notice) and not only was he able to push my case down, he carefully negotiated a dismissal of the charge altogether. I highly recommend Spodek, and more specifically, Alex Zhik for all of your legal issues. Thanks guys!
Guerline Menard
Guerline Menard
2024-03-18
Thanks again Spodek law firm, particularly Esq Claire Banks who stood right there with us up to the finish line. Attached photos taken right outside of the court building and the smile on our faces represented victory, a breath of fresh air and satisfaction. We are very happy that this is over and we can move on with our lives. Thanks Spodek law 🙏🏼🙏🏼🙏🏼🙏🏼🙌🏼❤️
Keisha Parris
Keisha Parris
2024-03-15
Believe every single review here about Alex Z!! From our initial consultation, it was evident that Alex possessed a profound understanding of criminal law and a fierce dedication to his clients rights. Throughout the entirety of my case, Alex exhibited unparalleled professionalism and unwavering commitment. What sets Alex apart is not only his legal expertise but also his genuine compassion for his clients. He took the time to thoroughly explain my case, alleviating any concerns I had along the way. His exact words were “I’m not worried about it”. His unwavering support and guidance were invaluable throughout the entire process. I am immensely grateful for Alex's exceptional legal representation and wholeheartedly recommend his services to anyone in need of a skilled criminal defense attorney. Alex Z is not just a lawyer; he is a beacon of hope for those navigating the complexities of the legal system. If you find yourself in need of a dedicated and competent legal advocate, look no further than Alex Z.
Taïko Beauty
Taïko Beauty
2024-03-15
I don’t know where to start, I can write a novel about this firm, but one thing I will say is that having my best interest was their main priority since the beginning of my case which was back in Winter 2019. Miss Claire Banks, one of the best Attorneys in the firm represented me very well and was very professional, respectful, and truthful. Not once did she leave me in the dark, in fact she presented all options and routes that could possibly be considered for my case and she reinsured me that no matter what I decided to do, her and the team will have my back and that’s exactly what happened. Not only will I be liberated from this case, also, I will enjoy my freedom and continue to be a mother to my first born son and will have no restrictions with accomplishing my goals in life. Now that’s what I call victory!! I thank the Lord, My mother, Claire, and the Spodek team for standing by me and fighting with me. Words can’t describe how grateful I am to have the opportunity to work with this team. I’m very satisfied, very pleased with their performance, their hard work, and their diligence. Thank you team!
Anthony Williams
Anthony Williams
2024-03-12
Hey, how you guys doing? Good afternoon my name is Anthony Williams I just want to give a great shout out to the team of. Spodek law group. It is such a honor to use them and to use their assistance through this whole case from start to finish. They did everything that they said they was gonna do and if it ever comes down to it, if I ever have to use them again, hands-down they will be the first law office at the top of my list, thank you guys so much. It was a pleasure having you guys by my side so if you guys ever need them, do not hesitate to pick up the phone and give them a call.
Loveth Okpedo
Loveth Okpedo
2024-03-12
Very professional, very transparent, over all a great experience
Bee L
Bee L
2024-02-28
Amazing experience with Spodek! Very professional lawyers who take your case seriously. They treated me with respect, were always available, and answered any and all questions. They were able to help me very successfully and removed a huge stress. Highly recommend.
divesh patel
divesh patel
2024-02-24
I can't recommend Alex Zhik and Spodek Law Firm highly enough for their exceptional legal representation and personal mentorship. From the moment I engaged their services in October 2022, Alex took the time to understand my case thoroughly and provided guidance every step of the way. Alex's dedication to my case went above and beyond my expectations. His expertise, attention to detail, and commitment to achieving the best possible outcome were evident throughout the entire process. He took the time to mentor me, ensuring I understood the legal complexities involved to make informed decisions. Alex is the kind of guy you would want to have a beer with and has made a meaningful impact on me. I also want to acknowledge Todd Spodek, the leader of the firm, who played a crucial role in my case. His leadership and support bolstered the efforts of Alex, and his involvement highlighted the firm's commitment to excellence. Thanks to Alex Zhik and Todd Spodek, I achieved the outcome I desired, and I am incredibly grateful for their professionalism, expertise, and genuine care. If you're in need of legal representation, look no further than this outstanding team.

Contact Our San Diego Property Division Lawyers Today

If you’re facing a divorce in San Diego, don’t navigate the complex process of property division alone. Our skilled attorneys at Spodek Law Group are here to protect your rights and ensure you receive your fair share of the marital assets.We offer free initial consultations, so you can get answers to your questions and learn more about how we can help. We understand that divorce is stressful, and we’re here to shoulder the legal burden so you can focus on moving forward with your life.

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