Will your unpaid services play a role in a California divorce?

On Behalf of | Nov 25, 2022 | Divorce

It is common for one spouse in a high-asset household to make sacrifices for the career of the other. You may have left your job despite having a degree to take care of the home, raise your children and otherwise support your spouse while they develop their career. 

As a stay-at-home parent, you may feel like you never stop working. However, your spouse who earns the paycheck may frequently diminish the value of your contributions. They may even declare that everything in your home actually belongs to them because they are the only one earning any income. 

It is quite normal for a stay-at-home parent to worry about what will happen during property division proceedings in California because they have limited immediate prospects. Thankfully, the courts will consider many factors when deciding how to divide your community property, including the work you have done around the home. 

The courts care about your uncompensated contributions

The good news is that regardless of how your spouse may feel about your unpaid household contributions, the courts tend to recognize their economic value. A full-time stay-at-home parent who provides child care, schedule management, cleaning, meal planning, cooking and driving services for the family could easily contribute a decent salary’s worth of value to their household every single year. 

You will need to look at how many hours you spend doing different kinds of work and look at the cost of hiring someone to provide their services to determine exactly what your unpaid support is worth. Outlining your contributions to the household and how leaving the workforce to make them has put you at a disadvantage can help those pursuing a fair property division outcome in a high-asset California divorce.