Separate property in CA generally includes the following:
- Assets acquired before the marriage: If one spouse owned a house or a business before getting married, it is generally considered separate property and would likely remain with that spouse.
- Appreciation on those separate assets is also separate.
- Inheritance or gifts received by one spouse as long as they are not comingled during the marriage. If inheritance is transferred into a joint account, those assets are comingled and will not be considered separate without a property tracing.
- Assets acquired after the date of separation or when spouses are no longer living together are usually considered separate property. The date of separation is very subjective in CA so try to agree on a date with your spouse as soon as possible.