5674 Stoneridge Drive, Suite 110
Pleasanton, CA 94588

(925) 463-0750

Staley Jobson
5674 Stoneridge Drive, Suite 110
Pleasanton, CA 94588

Tel: (925) 463-0750
Fax: (925) 463-0407


Divorce Stock Option Lawyers

Stock Options in a Divorce

California is a community property state,  This means  generally that all assets acquired during the marriage are considered part of the marital assets.        

As more and more companies are granting stock options to their employees as part of an overall equity compensation strategy, the division of stock options in a divorce can be a major part of a property division.   Valuing and dividing assets, especially stock options, can be difficult to accomplish equitably and fairly without the assistance of an experienced divorce lawyer, and, as needed, forensic accountants, tax specialists, and/or other professionals..

A "stock option" is the right to purchase a specified number of shares of stock for a specified price at specified times, usually granted to management and key employees.  The price at which the option is provided is called the "grant" or “strike” price.

The courts in California have held that in a divorce proceeding, the community has an interest in stock options granted during the marriage, and exercisable after the date of separation to the extent their grant is attributable to community efforts during the marriage. 

The court has broad discretion to select an equitable method for allocating the community and separate property interest when determining whether stock options are deferred compensation for past community efforts, compensation for present efforts or incentives for future services and retention.. 

In some cases, the analysis of stock options is also pertinent to determining the appropriate amounts of child support and/or spousal support.

The attorneys and staff at Staley Jobson will work with you to understand the stock option plan(s) involved in your dissolution, to determine its value, and to incorporate this information in the settlement or trial of your case.

Contact Us

If you'd like to see how we can help you with your family law issue, please call us at (925) 463-0750 or write to us using the contact form on the right side of this page.

We look forward to hearing from you.


To consult with one of our attorneys, please call us at (925) 463-0750.