Wallace v. Daley – Accounting in California Partition Actions

Wallace v. Daley (1990) 220 Cal.App. 3d 1028

Perhaps the most frequently cited case in all of California partition law is Wallace v. Daley (1990) 220 Cal.App. 3d 1028, which sets forth the general principle that every partition will include an accounting of offsets. The famous quote from Wallace v. Daley is that:

Every partition action includes a final accounting according to the principles of equity for both charges and credits upon each co-tenant’s interest. Credits include expenditures in excess of the co-tenant’s fractional share for necessary repairs, improvements that enhance the value of the property, taxes, payments of principal and interest on mortgages, and other liens, insurance for the common benefit, and protection and preservation of title.

Wallace v. Daley (1990) 220 Cal.App. 3d 1028, 1035–36 (citing California Code of Civil Procedure § 872.140)

Wallace v. Daley (1990) 220 Cal.App. 3d 1028 cited Code of Civil Procedure § 872.140, which provides as follows:

The court may, in all cases, order allowance, accounting, contribution, or other compensatory adjustment among the parties according to the principles of equity.

California Code of Civil Procedure § 872.140

In the context of this statute, one court explained that: “There is merit to the contention a plaintiff may be generally entitled to an accounting by requesting a partition.”[1]Finney v. Gomez (2003) 111 Cal. App. 4th 527, 539

Even further, another court noted that: “Where one cotenant has paid more than his proportion of the purchase price of the land, he is entitled on partition to an accounting therefor.”[2]Demetris v. Demetris (1954) 125 Cal.App.2d 440, 445

The court will then allocate the proceeds of sale via an accounting in accordance with California Code of Civil Procedure § 873.850. A partition referee may be appointed to expedite the accounting process, which can include offsets, inclusions, and other claims.

The bottom line is that parties in a partition action are entitled to request that the court divide the proceeds of sale in a manner that includes the uneven payments by parties for the mortgage, taxes, insurance, repairs, improvements, down payment, and any other matter through an accounting of offsets, also known as compensatory adjustments pursuant to Wallace v. Daley (1990) 220 Cal.App. 3d 1028, 1035–36.

Talkov Law's Partition Attorneys Can Help

If you want to end your co-ownership relationship, but your co-owner won’t agree, a partition action is your only option. With seven, full time partition lawyers, Talkov Law is the #1 partition law firm in California and has handled over 300 partition actions throughout California. Every case has resulted in a sale to either a third party or one of the co-owners. Not a single court has denied our clients the right to partition or declared our client to be a non-owner. Plus, for qualified cases, there is no fee until we settle or win your case!

If you're looking to end your co-ownership dispute, contact California's premier partition action law firm by calling Talkov Law at (844) 4-TALKOV (825568) or sending us a message today.

References

References
1 Finney v. Gomez (2003) 111 Cal. App. 4th 527, 539
2 Demetris v. Demetris (1954) 125 Cal.App.2d 440, 445
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