In California, those who go to court over their divorce and haven't decided how to divide their property may be held to a 50-50 split of their community property. While that may seem fair on the surface, splitting your marital assets in half isn't always what is fair or just for the people involved.
Take, for example, a stay-at-home parent who has been home for two years with their children after spending many years supporting their spouse while they were in school. That person may want to seek even more of the shared assets since they were the one who worked hard and paid for their spouse's education in hopes of having a better financial future.
There is also the kind of situation where one person never works or contributes but hopes to take half of all the shared property. They may even try to have a short-term marriage to get as much as they can in the separation. That's unfair, and it's something worth being addressed.
Should you take your case to court or settle the separation of your property outside court?
If you can, it is usually a better idea to separate your property outside court. You can negotiate with one another and take steps to make sure you're getting a fair amount of your marital assets, not just an equal share.
On top of that, dividing assets outside the courtroom gives you more flexibility. You and your spouse may be able to come up with solutions that a judge wouldn't. That's something to discuss with your attorney if you're considering negotiating and settling before going to trial.