If a married couple buys a house and the husband signs it over to the wife, is it still community property?

UPDATED: Dec 5, 2011

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If a married couple buys a house and the husband signs it over to the wife, is it still community property?

Now there is a divoce in progress and the wife does not want the house in the negotiation. Is this legal since it is a community property state?

Asked on December 5, 2011 under Family Law, Texas


S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Community property is property acquired during marriage. Each spouse has a one half interest in community property.

Separate property is property acquired before marriage or after the marriage ends.  A spouse has no claim to the other spouse's separate property.

In your situation, since the house was purchased during marriage, it is community property.  Since you signed the house over to your wife, ( I assume this was probably by quitclaim deed by which you would release your interest in the house), you no longer have ownership rights to the house.  The house itself is community property because it was acquired during marriage; however, you and your wife can agree to an unequal division of the community property such as occurred here when you signed the house over to your wife.  Although the house is an asset in the divorce, if its disposition has been agreed upon by both spouses, then determining the ownership of the house has been resolved and it would not need to be included in negotiations.

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