Getting Divorced in California, but have property in another state? Time to learn about “Quasi-Community” Property.

After a lifetime living in California, I was surprised to discover that most states are not community property states. We only give legal advice on California law, but according to our friends at Wikipedia, “the United States has nine community property states: Arizona, California, Idaho, Louisiana, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Washington, and Wisconsin. Alaska has also a community property system, but it is optional.”

What happens when the parties divorce in California but they acquired property while they were living in another state? How, for instance, will a California divorce court handle that beautiful, little Iowa farmhouse with the magical baseball field, grandstand and old-timer players appearing from time to time from the corn rows? This is where the concept of “quasi-community” property enters the property division conversation.

Quasi-community property means all real property (land and most things attached to it) or personal property (almost everything else), located anywhere in the world, that was acquired by either spouse while the person had a fixed, permanent home and principal residence outside of California, or was exchanged for real or personal property, wherever situated anywhere in the world, which would have been community property if the acquiring spouse had been living in California when the property was acquired. See Family Code §125.

California divides quasi-community property the same as it divides the parties’ California community estate. In other words, an equal division of the overall estate. Should you have any further questions or need legal advice on your current divorce situation, please schedule a consultation with us.