Move From Community Property State To Non-Community Property State

Community property interests of spouses are determined by the law of the domicile when they are acquired.  Community property retains its character as such when it is removed to a common law state[i]. 

The law of the state to which the parties remove will regulate their future conduct and acquisitions.  However, removal will not alter the rights of either to the property then in their possession, the title to which had vested under the community property law.  The community property law will cease to operate on property subsequently acquired in the state other than where they originally resided, and the change of domicile does not affect existing community interests.

Property rights are not lost simply because property is transported into another state and exchanged there for other property. The separate property of a nonresident husband or wife invested in state land remains separate property; conversely, the rights of state spouses are protected when community funds are invested in land in another state[ii].

The most frequently recurring issue, in cases involving a change of domicile from a community property state to a non-community property state, is the liability of property accumulated in the former state during the domicile there to inheritance taxation on the subsequent death of one of the spouses in the common-law jurisdiction.

[i] In re Marriage of Moore & Ferrie, 14 Cal. App. 4th 1472 (Cal. App. 1st Dist. 1993) 

[ii] Tomaier v. Tomaier, 23 Cal. 2d 754 (Cal. 1944)


Inside Move From Community Property State To Non-Community Property State