California Court of Appeal

Reset A A Font size: Print

Marriage of Burwell, F064265

The proper characterization of term life insurance proceeds depends on a number of factors: 1) the proceeds are entirely community when the final premium is paid solely with community property; 2) the proceeds are entirely separate property when a) a separate estate has paid the final premium with separate funds, and b) the insured spouse was insurable at the end of the last term paid for by community funds, and c) either i) the insured spouse's health was such that he or she could have purchased a comparable policy at a comparable price when the separate estate began paying the premiums, or ii) the policy did not contain a premium cap when the separate estate began paying the premiums; and 3) the proceeds are part community and part separate where a) the separate estate has paid the final premium with funds that are part community and part separate, or b) the insured spouse has become medically uninsurable before he or she began paying the premiums with separate property; or c) the insured spouse could not have purchased a comparable policy at a comparable price when he or she began paying the premiums with separate property. Here the trial court failed to make findings sufficient to determine proper characterization of the proceeds, and therefore the trial court's order is vacated and remanded for further factual findings and application of the rules set forth herein.

Appellate Information

  • Decided 10/31/2013
  • Published 10/31/2013

Judges

  • POOCHIGIAN

Court

  • California Court of Appeal

Counsel