Tuesday, November 2, 2021

"I will never get married again!"

That is the phrase you might often hear from people who had a rough divorce.

Unfortunately, they later learn that the property they accumulated in their next relationship, even though it was an unmarried relationship, is also subject to court division of the property accumulated during this time, under a "committed, intimate, relationship action" (CIR)  in which a court divides "community-like" property. (These court actions used to be called "meretricious relationship" actions, and may also be called an "equity relationship" action in today's courts.)

The ONLY way to avoid creating "community-like" property is to have a separate property agreement that completely spells out your property, and your partner's property, and who owns what in future accumulations from the labor of each of you.   These agreements also must meet certain standards of fairness when you draft and sign them or they might be subject to later attack in court, potentially putting you right back where you started.