Transmutation occurs when spouses transfer property between themselves changing the character of the property. There are three types of transmutation:
1. The transfer of community property to the separate property of one of the spouses;
2. The transfer of separate property of one of the spouses to the community property of the spouses; and
3. The transfer of separate property of one of the spouses to the other spouse’s separate property.
California Family Law Code sections 850-852, states that a couple, by agreement, may transfer or “transmute” community property to the separate property of either spouse or from the separate property of either spouse to the community. However, to survive most challenges to a transmutation during a divorce proceeding, any transfers of property between spouses must be in writing.
Family Code Section 853 (a):
A transmutation of real or personal property is not valid unless made in writing by an express declaration that is made, joined in, consented to, or accepted by the spouse whose interest in the property is adversely affected.
Please note that this legal advice does not establish a family law attorney-client relationship. This is a legal advertisement for Treviño Law, Inc, an Orange County family law firm.