Five Things to Know: Community Property

gavel laying between a toy house and family

The division of property is one of the essential issues that couples must resolve when they divorce. Particularly when high-value assets and wealth are involved, property rights matter a great deal toward each spouse’s financial interests. Family lawyers spend a great deal of time with the goal of their clients walking away from their marriage with everything they are entitled to. If you are considering a divorce in Nevada, here are five things to know about community property.

  1. Community property is equally divided

Community property is any asset that is not separate and is acquired during marriage. This usually includes assets purchased, retirement savings, and the income of the parties during marriage. The courts are mandated to make an equal division of community property unless there is a compelling reason not to.

  1. Courts generally cannot touch separate property.

In contrast to community property, all property acquired by a spouse before marriage—or is inherited by a spouse during a marriage—is classified as “separate property”. Family courts cannot touch separate property, which remains with the spouse who originally earned or acquired it. An exception to this rule is that the court can invade separate property for child or spousal support purposes.

  1. Don’t forget about the marital debt.

Debt collectors don’t go away just because a marriage ends. In addition to property, couples must address how debt is settled when they divorce. Like with property, all debt acquired during a marriage is presumed to be the equal obligation of both spouses.

  1. Marital fault is not at issue.

Nevada is a no-fault state, which means that a court cannot consider infidelity or other marital misconduct when dividing community property. However, a court can consider if community property was depleted to fund a spouse’s misconduct, such as unauthorized gifts to third parties.

  1. A premarital agreement can preempt community property.

Community property laws can be replaced by the terms of a valid premarital agreement. This is a legally binding contract that couples can execute before their marriage, which can preemptively address how property is divided should the couple divorce. These agreements allow spouses to classify their property themselves and specifically address who gets what.

High-Level Family Representation from Viloria, Oliphant, Oster & Aman L.L.P.

Viloria, Oliphant, Oster & Aman, L.L.P. is a full-service law firm, providing legal representation in high asset divorces. If you are interested in protecting your legal property rights and establishing your financial future, call us. Our attorneys are experienced, proven, and effective. Let us help you. Call Viloria, Oliphant, Oster & Aman L.L.P. today at (775) 227-2280 to schedule a consultation or contact our office through our website.

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