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Declarations of Disclosure in Temecula Divorce

The Declarations of Disclosure are sets of forms and information required by each party to submit to the other in ALL divorce, legal separation and annulment cases.  The “preliminary” declaration of disclosure is required to be submitted within several months of the commencement of the action, and the “final” declaration of disclosure are served at the end of the case before trial, unless both parties mutually waive the disclosure.

Our office has been involved in the preparation, review, and litigation concerning declarations of disclosure.  These disclosures are extremely important in any divorce case because they provide the foundation for settlement, impeachment of the other party for lying about their assets, debts, income or expenses, and for litigation of just about every issue that is likely to be involved in a divorce case.

The Declaration of Disclosure consists primarily of two forms, the Schedule of Assets and Debts and the Income and Expense Declaration.  The Schedule of Assets and Debts requires the person completing the form to provide the following information about assets and debts:

  • The type of asset
  • The account number of the asset, if any
  • The value of the asset as of the date the person completes the form
  • The amount of debt associated with a particular asset
  • The date of acquisition of the asset or debt

The types of assets and debts covered by the form include:

  • Real property
  • Personal property including electronics, furniture, etc.
  • Art and jewelry
  • Vehicles including boats
  • Bank and investment accounts
  • Retirement accounts including 401k, stock options, pensions, etc.
  • Cash
  • Tax refunds
  • Business interests
  • Credit card debt
  • Student loans
  • Promissory notes owed and collectible

The Income and Expense Declaration is a form that provides information as the form suggests.  The types of information that is required on this form includes:

  • Age and place of employment
  • Job title and number of years employed
  • Education and vocational training
  • Tax filing status and exemptions
  • Average monthly salary or wages
  • Overtime, vacation pay, etc. averages
  • Commissions, bonuses, etc.
  • Rental and investment income
  • Business income
  • Net value of assets
  • Explanation of change of income
  • Liquid assets
  • Monthly expenses
  • Amount of attorney fees paid
  • Information about child custody
  • Health insurance company information.

Are the Declarations of Disclosure Filed in Court?

Not by the party filling out the forms.  The only document filed is called the Declaration Regarding Service of Declaration of Disclosure, which is basically just a proof of service that says that the documents were mailed or hand-delivered to the opposing party or their attorney of record.  However, the other party may wish to use a party’s disclosures against them in court and may file them for that purpose.  For example, if spousal support or child support is an issue at a hearing and one party has previously provided false information on their Income and Expense Declaration for example, the other party would submit that document to the court along with “rebuttal” evidence to show that the disclosure made by the party was either false or misleading.

What Other Information is Served for the Preliminary Declaration of Disclosure?

Form FL-140 provides the requirements for the additional information needed for a preliminary or final declaration of disclosure.  The required information in addition to the completed Schedule of Assets and Debts and Income and Expense Declaration includes:

  • Tax returns for the past two years
  • A statement of all material facts and information regarding the value of all assets that are community property or partly community property
  • A statement of all material facts and information about community obligations
  • A written disclosure of any business opportunity, business interest, or investment that was presented since the date of separation but that resulted from an opportunity that arose during marriage.

Notably, there is a “Property Declaration” form that may be used instead of a Schedule of Assets and Debts.  However, if you complete the Property Declaration you will have to complete two such forms, one for community property and one for separate property.  It is slightly more cumbersome than just completing the Schedule of Assets and Debts.

Can Service of the Preliminary Declarations of Disclosure be Waived by the Parties to a Divorce?

No.

For more information about declarations of disclosure, contact our office today.  If you believe your spouse has not been truthful in their declarations of disclosure, definitely contact our office immediately and read this page about discovery.