San Francisco Unmarried Couple Property Division Lawyer

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California’s community property code applies to only legally married spouses, or couples who formed a Registered Domestic Partnership. Couples who lived together outside of marriage are not entitled to the same presumption of an equal division of their accumulated wealth. You may need legal counsel to protect your property, or to reclaim your contributions to the household estate. Schoenberg Family Law Group, P.C., has long represented unmarried individuals in the division of their property. Our San Francisco family law practice advocates for gay and lesbian partners and cohabitating, non-married couples. Our goal is to preserve your dignity, humanity, and property rights in a legal system that does not universally acknowledge your relationship.

“I called this office with a few questions about terminating a domestic partnership in San Francisco. The call was answered right away. After a few preliminary questions, I was passed directly to Ms. Schoenberg herself, who professionally and warmly answered my questions to set me on the path. I would heartily recommend this practice to anyone in need of family law assistance in San Francisco.”

— A.T. (See additional client testimonials.)

Dividing Assets When Community Property Does Not Apply

We regularly handle complex property distribution on behalf of high earners who are not legally married. This involves many of the same outside experts, such as appraisers and business valuation specialists, but may involve a different set of laws than those that apply in a married couple’s divorce or legal separation.

We can help you understand your rights and options regarding division of assets acquired while you were together, such as:

  • A house or real estate
  • A business or professional practice
  • Stocks and investments
  • Vehicles and valuable personal effects
  • Pensions and retirement accounts

Our attorneys have vast experience in handling Marvin actions, where applicable, in California civil courts.

To the extent that your assets are addressed in a cohabitation agreement or domestic partnership agreement, the court will typically honor those contracts. You may have to litigate if there is a valuation dispute, if you jointly acquired property not addressed in the agreement, or if you are alleging fraud or breach of contract.

If there is no formal agreement, we can represent you in court to argue for or against claims to particular assets.

You May Not Be Married, But You Do Have Rights

We advise clients who were never married in regard to several issues, including tax implications of property settlements, or conversions of domestic partnership agreements to prenuptial agreements for same-sex partners marrying under new marriage equality laws.

To speak with our San Francisco lawyers about property issues for unmarried couples, please contact us online or call us at 415.834.1120.

Our Awards and Memberships

Schoenberg Family Law Group, P.C., recognizes that family law matters involve complex, sensitive issues that can have a lasting impact on you, your family, your finances and your future.

More About Honors & Awards
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10.0 Avvo Superb Top Attorney Family Law, Divorce
Los Angeles and San Francisco Daily Journal
American Jurist Institute Top 10 Attorneys 2017
2022 Client Satisfaction American Institute of Family Law Attorneys 10 Best
100 Fastest-Growing Private Companies In the Bay Area San Francisco Business Times
10 Best Female Attorneys 2017 American Institute of Family Law Attorneys
San Francisco Bay Area's Best and Brightest Companies to Work For Winner 2021
2018 Best Lawyers Best Law Firms U.S. News & World Report
California Board of Legal Specialization (CBLS) State Bar of California
2020 Client Champion Debra R. Schoenberg
San Francisco Business Times Corporate Philanthropy Awards 2019
Expertise Best Divorce Lawyers in Concord 2020
2018 Expertise Best Divorce Lawyers in San Francisco
Fast 100
Lead Counsel Rated
Litigation Counsel of America (LCA) Fellow
National Board of Trial Advocacy
2017 Parents' Press Best of The Bay
San Francisco Business Times
Rated By Super Lawyers Debra R. Schoenberg
The Business of Pride
2021 Best Businesses Three Best Rated
San Francisco Business Times Corporate Philanthropy Awards & Summit
American Jurist Institute Top 10 Attorneys of 2018
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