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Pereira v. Pereira

Supreme Court of California
156 Cal. 1 (1909)


Mrs. Pereira (plaintiff) and Mr. Pereira (defendant) were married on April 19, 1900. Mr. Pereira operated his own business at the time he married Mrs. Pereira. Mr. Pereira invested approximately $15,500 into the business as of April 19, 1900. During the marriage, Mr. Pereira continued to operate his business, and the $15,500 investment remained in the business. In 1905, Mrs. Pereira obtained a judgment of divorce from Mr. Pereira on the grounds of extreme cruelty. Mrs. Pereira was awarded three-fifths of all Mr. Pereira’s earnings and acquisitions from his business. The trial court viewed all profits or earnings of the business as community property. The trial court’s calculation of what constituted community property did not subtract or credit Mr. Pereira for the personal, separate-property investment Mr. Pereira made to start the company. Mr. Pereira appealed the judgment. The Court of Appeals of California reversed the trial court's judgment and remanded the case for a recalculation of the appropriate value of the community property. Mrs. Pereira petitioned the Court of Appeals of California to simply amend the judgment from the trial court to allow Mr. Pereira to recover his initial investment and 7 percent interest on the investment. The California Court of Appeals granted Mrs. Pereira's request and amended the judgment. Mr. Pereira appealed.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Shaw, J.)

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