In re Marriage of DavisAnnotate this Case
Cal. Fam. Code 771(a) provides that the “earnings and accumulations of a spouse…,while living separate and apart from the other spouse, are the separate property of the spouse.” On December 30, 2008, Wife filed for dissolution of her marriage from Husband. Wife listed the date of their separation as June 1, 2006 even though she did not move out of the marital home at that date. In response, Husband listed the date of separation as of a few days after Wife’s filing of the petition. The trial court found the date of separation to be June 1, 2006. The Court of Appeal affirmed, concluding that physically living apart is not an “indispensable threshold requirement” for separation under section 771(a). The Supreme Court reversed, holding that section 771(a) requires the spouses to be living in separate residences in order for their earnings and accumulations to be their separate property.