California Code of Civil Procedure 873.240 is the California partition statute that describes how property will be physically divided in a partition lawsuit. The statute provides that:
Where real property consists of more than one distinct lot or parcel, the property shall be divided by such lots or parcels without other internal division to the extent that it can be done without material injury to the rights of the parties.California Code of Civil Procedure 873.240
When partition in kind is determined to be an equitable remedy, the property will be divided by lot or parcel lines when available and appropriate, meaning one co-owner may receive certain parcels while the other co-owner would receive other parcels.
Code of Civil Procedure Section 873.240 was analyzed in the unpublished opinion of Bordessa v. Lanker, No. A120733, 2009 WL 756975, at *6 (Cal. Ct. App. Mar. 24, 2009) as follows:
The Bordessas now argue that the court erred when it ordered the parties not to seek recognition of ACC 2. They rely on section 873.240 that states: “Where real property consists of more than one distinct lot or parcel, the property shall be divided by such lots or parcels without other internal division to the extent that it can be done without material injury to the rights of the parties.”
We reject the argument for two reasons. First, section 873.240 sets forth a statutory preference that property be divided “without other internal division.” Failing to recognize ACC 2 would not cause other “internal division” of the property at issue. It would instead result in the consolidation of the historic parcels at issue.
Second, to the extent the court’s actions could be construed as causing “internal division” of the property, that act is not statutorily precluded. The statute says internal division should be avoided “to the extent that it can be done without material injury to the rights of the parties.” (§ 873.240.) Here, recognizing ACC 2 would cause material injury to the parties. As the trial court stated, it might not be possible to recognize ACC 2 and trying to do so would delay the partition process. Furthermore, if ACC 2 was recognized as a separate parcel, it would be much more difficult to add it to either ACC 1 or 3 and to create two parcels that are relatively close in size and value. We conclude the statutory preference against internal parcel division was overcome.
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