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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 110573
Experience:  Experienced attorney: Family law, Estate Law, SS Law etc.
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I live in California and am separated from my wife. We have

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I live in California and am separated from my wife. We have both agreed to dissolve our marriage of under 5 years and have qualified (no kids, no house or property, less then 10,000 in assets, less then 5 years married,etc) to dissolve the marriage through the Summary Dissolution of Marriage process. All required forms have been signed and submitted to the County for final approval which is scheduled for this November. Now my question: If I purchase a home before the November final date of the Summary dissolution is signed off by the Judge, does my soon to be xwife have a legal interest in the home I am purchasing and will this purchase (before the final date) disqualify our eligibility to dissolve our marriage through the Summary Dissolution process ? Do I have to wait until after the Novemebr final date before I purchase my new home?
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking.

Yes, once forms for dissolution are submitted and you ar separated pending the dissolution, the law says property acquired during that time is presumed separate property. However, if you are getting a mortgage, because the marriage is not fully dissolved, the mortgage company will require your spouse to sign a waiver of spousal interest confirming she has no interest in the property. However, the legal presumption in CA that while the marital community is not officially terminated until entry of the order of divorce, the majority of the property acquired between filing of the divorce and entry of the final decree of divorce is presumed separate property (I say majority because pensions are debatable and value of pensions can be determined as of date of dissolution not date of filing and that is still a hotly contested litigation matter in CA).

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Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I will be having a mortgage so what if my wife refuses to sign a waiver of spousal interest in the house I am buying at the time of Title Closing ? Would she also need to sign a Quit Claim Deed or what ever you call it ?

Also, to be clear ,are you saying if I do buy a home before the final dissolution date, this will not disqualify me from completing the Summary Dissolution of Marriage Process ?

Thank you for your response. If your wife refuses to sign the waiver, most mortgage companies will insist she be placed on the mortgage or will refuse the mortgage because they do not want to be in the middle of a community property battle later, even though CA law does state that property acquired between separating and obtaining the final divorce is separate property. See: Ca Fam § 771(a).

Buying a home before final dissolution does not stop the summary dissolution process.
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