Seattle Divorce Attorneys Who Handle Community & Separate Property Claims

Washington Divorce Lawyers Handling Complex Property Division

Is everything really up for division in a divorce?


One of the biggest mistakes people make during marriage is commingling their separate assets with the assets of the community. When this happens, your lawyer had better be prepared to help you untangle this mess. If you are unable to prove that a particular asset is separate, in all likelihood your spouse will end up with half.

As you may know, Washington is a community property state. In community property states, each spouse owns a one-half interest in all of the community property. There is very specific case law that defines community and separate property. Your lawyer must be familiar with this issue and should make appropriate inquiries during your early meetings about the source of all assets owned by you or your spouse/registered domestic partner (RDP).

If you intend to claim that a particular asset is separate, it will be your burden to provide admissible legal proof on this issue. It can be a legal nightmare to try and unravel what happened to your separate asset – and truthfully, sometimes this is an impossible feat.

Separate Property Claims

Prevailing on a separate property claim almost always requires the testimony of a forensic CPA who has experience in tracing assets.

Separate property claims are among the stickiest of all property claims in a divorce. Tracing these interests is tedious and painstaking. At DuBois Cary Law Group, our Seattle divorce attorneys work with an amazing group of CPAs who do a great job of writing reports and testifying in court about community and separate assets. Often we bring our CPA to mediation when separate property is an issue. The burden of proof on making a separate property claim is quite high, so this is an area where you definitely want a seasoned expert on your side.

At DuBois Cary Law Group, we have prevailed both in settlements and at trial in cases where one party has tangled up their separate property to the point that it was quite challenging to identify and separate out from the community property. We have longstanding relationships with exceptional CPAs who provide compelling reports documenting separate property tracing.

Contact a Seattle Divorce Lawyer

If you have questions, or want to arrange a confidential consultation, please contact DuBois Cary Law Group today. Our waterfront office is located on the north end of Lake Union in Seattle, Washington. We look forward to meeting you and helping you achieve the solutions you seek.