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Typical California Divorce Settlements and Retirement Accounts

How do typical California divorce settlements treat retirement accounts? It’s a pervasive question, and one that many Californians facing divorce need to ask. In most cases, 401(k) and pensions are divided by a qualified domestic relations order or QDRO. What is a QDRO? The Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO for short) is a legal document that provides instructions through a court order to the Plan provider regarding the community and separate property aspects of the 401(k) or pension. The document includes instructions and allows the Plan provider to make payments non-employee ex-spouse per the California divorce settlement. Individual Retirement Accounts…

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Typical California Divorce Settlements about Bank Accounts

In a California divorce settlement, all community property (any property or earnings acquired by either spouse during the marriage) is typically split equally between both parties. All separate property (any property acquired before the marriage, after separation, by gift to one party, or by bequest to one party) is typically confirmed to the owner. The division of property and the characterization of assets during a California divorce seems simple, but it can become increasingly complicated when assets are co-mingled. Co-mingling of funds is often the case when there are joint checking or savings accounts. Most California courts will start with…

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10 Financial Mistakes to Avoid in Your Divorce Settlement

California couples going through a divorce will have to make a lot of decisions. Many of the choices they will be faced have significant effects on their financial future and security. Parties involved in a California divorce must seek and consider the advice of experienced professionals. 10 Financial Mistakes To Avoid in Your California Divorce Settlement: 1.    Ignoring Your Expenses: Create a realistic, and clear monthly budget. Also, consider how your living expenses may change and come up with fair projections of how your budget would need to change to accommodate your life after divorce. 2.    Assuming that as the Parent with…

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How Your Divorce Attorney Can Discover Hidden Assets

One of the main goals of a divorce is to provide a fair division of property, assets, and debts between the divorcing parties. Both parties must be completely aware of all assets, debts, and property. Having all the necessary information can be very difficult when one party is not cooperating. Sometimes the situation can even escalate to one spouse attempting to hide assets. Trying to find assets that your spouse is hiding or failing to disclose can be a complicated task, but a skilled divorce attorney can help. Discovering Hidden Assets: 1.    Analyzing the Case: Divorce attorneys attempting to find…

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Elder Divorce: How a Reverse Mortgage Works During Divorce

In many divorce cases, the first question asked is what will happen to the family home and who will live there. This concern is even more prevalent in cases of elder divorce. When splitting up assets, one of the most challenging decisions is what a couple should do about their house. Many younger divorcing couples find themselves facing the prospect of going from a dual income to a single income, which creates unavoidable tension. One spouse may wish to continue living in the home, but the other spouse may not qualify to purchase another residence unless the current house is…

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California Divorce: Is Property & Debt Always Divided 50/50?

California is what is known as a community property state, a state in which everything you and your spouse earned or bought during your marriage belongs to both of you in equal measure. But that does not mean that you have to divide everything 50/50. Are Assets in Divorce Always Split 50/50 in the Community Property States? Everything that you and your spouse contributed to the marriage during the time you were married (with only a few exceptions) must be divided equitably during your divorce. According to California state law, the way you divide assets and debts must be fair…

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Considering the Impact of Divorce on College Financial Planning

Divorcing parents have to manage a number of unique challenges when they plan for the financing of their child’s college education. If possible, divorced parents should cooperate and consider implementing a number of strategies to maximize the financial aid available to their college student. In doing so, they could potentially decrease the financial burden of a college education for the student and those assisting them financially. During the course of a divorce, there are many financial decisions that must be made. Many of these financial decisions will impact what information ends up on your child’s FAFSA (the form submitted to…

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Will New Tax Laws Complicate Divorce in 2019?

Some are saying that the 2019 tax bill is complicating divorce for women. And they are right. For those whose divorces will be finalized after December 31, 2018, there will be repercussions. The new law makes spousal support (sometimes referred to as alimony) non-tax-deductible for the payer and non-taxable for the recipient. This effectively eliminates the previous tax benefit of larger support payments. This is particularly noticeable in high tax states like California and New York where the deduction in place before the new law took effect could save top earners up to 50% in taxes. Since women are more…

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What Happens If You Lie on an Income and Expense Declaration?

Every couple going through a divorce is required to file an Income and Expense Declaration (Form FL-150). This is a request for spousal support (alimony), child support or attorney’s fees and accuracy in the disclosure is required by law. During divorce emotions and stress levels are usually both at fairly high levels. Sometimes one or both parties may make decisions that they would normally not consider. When a party going through divorce decides to lie about their income and expenses it can become a huge problem. If you believe that your spouse is not telling the truth about their income…

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Protecting Your Privacy During Divorce

Going through a divorce is hard for a variety of reasons. One that many don’t consider until they’re in the midst of a difficult situation is that you can have very little control over your privacy. News of a divorce tends to spread quickly and those going through divorce frequently find themselves on the uncomfortable side of difficult, intrusive questions about their personal life. You do have the right to keep your private life private and if this is a priority for you, it’s best to actively seek privacy during the divorce process. If you are going through a divorce,…

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