Marina, CA asked in Divorce for California

Q: Will my husband forfeit the equity in our home if he divides his finances from mine as part of our separation?

My husband and I each live in a condo owned by us as a couple. The one I live in is more valuable. As we divide our finances, he worries that he will sacrifice the increase in value of "my" condo because he will not be paying the mortgage payment. We would like to separate our bank accounts soon. Can you help? Thank you so much.

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1 Lawyer Answer
Maurice Mandel II
Maurice Mandel II
  • Newport Beach, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: You really need to speak with a Family Law attorney. IMO, once you award property to each other, and separate, all equity increase becomes separate property. To have a different result, you would need to take title in Joint Tenancy or Tenancy in common and each have a certain % interest in the property. In theory he pays his % of your mortgage and you pay your % of his. This is an over complicated and messy way to handle a separation/dissolution, because you are still joined at the mortgage so to speak. There is nothing keeping you from opening new bank accounts (preferably at new bank, at least for a while) and beginning to keep the money separate. There may be some nuances to achieving the result that you want which is why I recommend a Family Law attorney. There are several on Justia in your area.

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