CALIFORNIA PROPERTY DIVISION
Division of Marital Property
Appraise All Properties and Holdings of Consequence
When dividing marital property, take special care to ensure that all holdings are properly valued. This is necessary to make a fair and equitable distribution. Get independent third-party appraisals of all property. A neutral party can assess the true market value of an item. You may be surprised that some items that hold great sentimental value to you are not worth much on the open market, while other assets that you don’t personally like carry a high price tag.
Also, make sure to investigate the value of not-so-obvious items. For example, season tickets for sporting events may be worth far more today than they were when first purchased. Your attorney may review records of tickets you or your spouse sold in the past, or browse current ebay listings to nail down an estimated value. Further, just because your spouse holds one asset particularly dear, this does not mean that you are any less entitled to its value. If you give your former spouse the season Dodgers tickets, you will be entitled to a larger share of another asset—a vacation home for example—in exchange.
In addition, it is important to have appraisals performed on any jewelry acquired during the marriage. Precious metal prices have skyrocketed recently and you may be entitled to an increase in value, regardless of who claims to own the jewelry. The same goes for an old family Mustang or other collectible. Your former spouse’s particular affinity for his or her special car should not affect the fair and equitable distribution overall. The same theory applies to all tangible properties.
Divorce, amongst many other things, is business. To ensure a fair and equitable distribution of marital holdings, keep sentimentality to a minimum. If your former spouse insists on takinga particular item, ensure fairness by getting an independent appraisal. Work closely with your attorney to ferret out hidden values or holdings. You may be pleasantly surprised by what you find.
A Professional Corportation
William A. Feinberg 1928-2001
The information in this document is not intended to serve as legal advice. You should consult qualified legal counsel before acting on any information contained herein. The information contained herein, including case examples, does not constitute a guarantee, warranty, or prediction regarding the outcome of your legal matter.