Quitclaim Deeds and Their Effect in Divorce Proceedings

Quitclaim Deeds and Their Effect in Divorce Proceedings

Occasionally, one spouse asks another to quitclaim their interest from a property owned by both spouses. A quitclaim deed essentially terminates the interests of the person signing the quitclaim deed in a piece of property. In some cases, one spouse has better credit than the other and not having one of the spouses on the title can sometimes provide for better loan or interest rate options. In other cases, the spouse asking for a quitclaim deed secretly intends to terminate the marriage and assumes that a quitclaim deed will secure their sole interest in an otherwise community asset.

Title alone does not control ownership in marital disputes under the California Family Code. In California, except as otherwise provided by statute, all property, real or personal, wherever situated, acquired by a married person during the marriage while domiciled in this state is community property. (Cal. Fam. Code § 760). This presumption of community property supersedes presumption in the form of title in most cases.

In other words, if your spouse has successfully encouraged you to quitclaim your interest from a marital or community asset without providing you with adequate compensation, such quitclaim may be invalid due to undue influence. In such cases, the spouse that was advantaged by the quitclaim deed bears the burden of proof to overcome the presumption of undue influence.

Orange County divorce attorneys at the Gill Law Group, PC handle divorce cases with all degrees of complexities. If you have decided to terminate your marriage and need assistance maximizing your legal interests in divorce proceedings, contact our firm to schedule a free consultation with a divorce attorney.

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