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Getting a divorce in California can mean long negotiations, and even litigation, as a couple works to divide their assets and liabilities. The process of property division is among the most hotly contested areas in many divorce situations. Now some authorities note, that with proper planning, there may be ways to lessen the financial blow that can be caused by divorce.

The question of property division during a divorce often begins with the process of classifying property as separate or marital. In order for property to be determined to be separate it must not have been co-mingled with marital assets during the marriage. In addition, the laws are different tin each state and may require that you present proof at the time of the divorce that shows that the money came into the marriage separately and that it remained that way throughout the time a couple was wed.

In the case of accounts that are established after a couple is married, some authorities suggest that each spouse do a complete review of finances each year during the marriage. The information gleaned from such an exercise can be important if a divorce happens. This step may be of particular benefit to those who play a less active role in maintaining financial records.

It is essential that all people in California work to have a complete understanding of their financial lives. This is especially true for those seeking a divorce. Property division is a sticky issue for many in divorce and being armed with information can help even the playing field.

Source: WSJ.com, "Easing the Sting of Divorce," Karen Blumenthal, June 15, 2012

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