Marriage of Fonstein
Supreme Court of California
131 Cal. Rptr. 873 (1976)
Sarane Fonstein (plaintiff) was married to Harold Fonstein (defendant) during the time that he held an ownership interest in a law partnership. During the divorce proceedings, the trial court found that Harold's interest in his law partnership was a community-property interest. The trial court further found that the community-property interest in Harold's law partnership could not be divided in kind. The trial court did not find any evidence that Harold had intended to withdraw from his law partnership in the foreseeable future. However, in valuing the community-property interest in Harold's law partnership based upon the withdrawal value, the trial court offset the value of that partnership interest against the tax liability that would be incurred if Harold did withdraw. Sarane appealed the trial court's decision to deduct the potential tax liability against the value of Harold's partnership interest.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Sullivan, J.)
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