In re Marriage of ValliAnnotate this Case
Before Husband and Wife separated, Husband used community property funds from a joint bank account to buy an insurance policy on his life, naming Wife as the sole owner and beneficiary. At the parties’ marital dissolution proceeding, the trial court ruled that the insurance policy was community property, awarded the policy to Husband, and ordered him to buy out Wife’s interest in the policy by paying her one-half of the policy’s cash value at the time of trial. The court of appeal reversed, concluding that the trial court erred in characterizing the policy as community property and that the insurance policy was Wife’s separate property. The Supreme Court reversed, holding that, unless the statutory transmutation requirements have been met, the life insurance policy is community property. Remanded.