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2012: How do You ask for Reimbursements for Payments of Community Property Obligations After Separation Made With Separate Property Funds in a San Diego Divorce or Legal Separation?

In San Diego, when someone wants to proceed with a divorce or a legal separation, one question that often arises is how to ask for reimbursement for payments of community property obligations after separation made with separate property funds. During a divorce or legal separation case in San Diego, the date of the separation is either the date listed on the petition for legal separation or divorce or on th response or when the divorce petition is filed. In some family law cases, the date of separation can be crucial as to outcome for reimbursements as well as assets and debts For every divorce or a legal separation case in San Diego, the separation date must be listed on the response and petition in the Superior Court. The character of the asset, which can be community, separate, or quasi-community, is determined by the date of separation. The Law Office of Doppelt and Forney, APLC has experience with reimbursements and assisting clients with tracings as needed per the Family Lazw Code Section 2640. A free consultation is offered up to 30 minutes and can be by telephone if requested. Their phone number is 800-769-4748 for calendaring.

The date of separation is also used to determine matters of debts. The date of separation is also crucial in the matters of final resolution. In San Diego, the Superior Court has the legal authority to rule on the date of separation [months or even years] after the filing date in cases of legal separation or divorce. While all this time, the payment of various community property expenses of both parties, such as mortgages, credit card payments, and other debts, can be made via separate property funds of both parties. Payments may also be made by community property funds. Anyone from both the spouses can ask for a reimbursement of half of the separate property payment at the time of settlement and/or trial. Both parties owe half of the community property debt so they can ask for a reimbursement for a portion of the separate property payment to the community property expense. Such actions are apart from keeping track of the separate property contributions during a marriage. Some accountings may get complicated and expert witnesses [such as forensic CPA’s] may be needed. An attorney can assist you with obtaining the expert for your individual case. Damon and Forney, APLC have worked with many local forensic CPA’s for family law cases and hearings in San Diego Family Law Court.

There are some strategies possible for reimbursement, such as reducing the community property equalization amount from the spouse who was responsible for paying the debt by whole credit amount before the calculation of equalizing payment. Through this method, the spouse who has paid these debts may be entitled to receive the fifty percent reimbursement. On the other hand, the payments that were to be made after separation and before Judgment dates for the community expenses can be equalized by calculating them separately. A common confusion arising in such cases is that reimbursement is to be made for one half since both parties owe one half of the total amount. If there is a disagreement on the date of separation, a Judge will hold a bifurcated trial and determine what the date of separation should be. This is a very fact driven approach however there are Family Law Codes & Cases which are also considered.

However, in some scenarios, it can also happen that the Judge may not order the credit of reimbursement. This is within the discretion of the Judge for reimbursements. A factual analysis will argue that the spouse responsible for making the payment, and under some circumstances, if the payment being made was unreasonable for them to expect a reimbursement, then they won’t be entitled to a reimbursement by the Court.

Doppelt and Forney, APLC is a local San Diego law firm having professionals that will guide you through all the matters related to family law. If you have questions about whether you are entitled to reimbursement for payments you made on community debt post-separation with separate property funds, please feel free to set your confidential consultation. Their office is conveniently located right off the I-15 at Bernardo Center Drive. There is plenty of free parking and an elevator.

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