Oregon is not a community property state. A community property state is a state that divides all community property equally between spouse in a divorce. Community property is property acquired by one or both spouses during the marriage that was not acquired by gift, inheritance, or bequest.
Property division in Oregon divorces
Oregon is an equitable distribution state, which divides and distributes community property based on what is just and fair under the circumstances. Like community property states, equitable distribution states such as Oregon categorize the property of the spouses as either separate property or community property. Separate property is the property a spouse acquired before marriage or obtained by inheritance, bequest, or gift only to that spouses. Community property is divided between the spouses regardless of whether the property is held individually by one spouse or jointly by the spouses.
Each spouse must submit an Statement of Assets and Liabilities form containing a detailed listing of all property held joint or individually. The categories of property include:
- Real property
- Bank accounts
- Cash on hand
- Personal property
- Business interests
- Insurance policies
- Pensions and investments
The spouses can agree to the designation of the property as separate or community property. They may also agree to which community property goes to which spouse. If the married couple is unable to agree of the division of the community property, the court determines the distribution. Oregon law also allows property division by premarital agreement between the spouses. The agreement must be in writing. A premarital agreement is effective when a couple marries. If the court finds that the agreement is valid and legally enforceable, it may distribute the property in the manner set in the premarital agreement.