What Happens to Community Property

Cindy Best

 

Once property is considered community property, it must be divided equitably between the spouses. That is why it is important to determine the characterization of the property at the beginning of the divorce. There may be arguments about whether property is community or not, but most property is fairly easy to characterize. Property includes real property, which is land or a house. Property also includes your furniture, bank accounts, savings account, investments and deferred compensation plans, such as 401Ks or IRAs.

Property for division, however, does not include Social Security benefits. Social Security law governs your Social Security account and it cannot be changed in a divorce decree. If you want to know specific information about your Social Security benefits, you might want to contact the Social Security Administration to find out about your specific income. Most property disputes revolve around houses. For some reason, many couples maintain complicated information regarding when and how a house was purchased and whose name is on the deed. It is important that you know if your name is on your house deed. You can check that on the Internet, courtesy of the Maricopa County Recorder?s Office at?recorder.maricopa.gov/.

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