What is the difference between Community and Separate Property?

In a divorce, the court has jurisdiction to divide community property of the parties, which is presumed to be all property or liability obtained during the marriage. Property acquired before marriage is characterized as separate property, and therefore is not subject to division by the court. Separate property may also be obtained during marriage by gift, inheritance, or through personal injury damages (but lost wages obtained through a personal injury suit are community). However, income to separate property during the marriage is a community asset. Obviously, this gets a bit complicated, and there are numerous rules for particular kinds of assets.



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