Who Really Owns That Property?

Date: Thursday, March 23, 2023
Time: 7:45am - 9:00am
Speaker: Samuel M. Ford, Esq.

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It happens all the time. One spouse buys property in his or her own name during marriage. The other spouse even signs a quitclaim deed divesting themselves of whatever interest they may have had in the property. The spouse holding title dies first. Who owns this property? The owner of legal title is presumed to be the owner of the full beneficial title (Evidence Code 662 ) but also all property, real or personal, wherever situated, acquired by a married person during the marriage while domiciled in this state is community property (Family Code 760). How do we resolve ownership issues when these two legal presumptions would each lead us to different conclusions? How can we avoid this problem in the first place?
About our Speaker
Samuel Ford graduated from Cornell University with a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy where he also studied the Japanese language. He went on to teach English in Japan for three years, immersing himself in the culture and becoming fluent in the language. Samuel earned his J.D. at the University of California, Davis, School of Law in 2010 and was admitted to the California Bar that same year.
Sam opened up his own practice in 2021 where he practices exclusively in the field of Trusts, Estates and Probate. His practice is overwhelmingly focused on Estate Planning and Trust Administration, but he naively took one litigation case soon after going solo. He will not soon make that mistake again, but, as a silver lining, he was forced to learn a lot about the conflict between the title presumption and the community property presumption in a probate context and will be sharing the fruits of that experience with you at this focus group.
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