Using the Draft and Silent Auction Methods to Divide Your Household Goods


When most of us think about a Pasadena divorce, we imagine arguments over who gets to keep the house, or who gets custody of the kids. While these big picture issues certainly take up a lot of time in the settlement process, you'd be surprised at how many couples end up arguing over simple household goods. For example, a photo surfaced on Reddit last week showing a couple who had gone to court to divide a collection of Beanie Babies worth $2,500 to $5,000. The collection was spread on the courtroom floor and the tiny stuffed animals were divided one by one.

To save time and avoid the legal costs associated with having a judge divide up your household goods, it's best to work this issue out on your own. If you can't easily agree who gets what, the draft and silent auction methods are a good compromise.

The draft method begins by making a detailed list of community property that is in dispute and the monetary value of each item. Flip a coin to see who gets first pick, as you would in a football draft. The winner picks the item from the list that he or she wants. When finished, the other spouse chooses an item or items of an equivalent monetary value. This process continues until everything on the list has been divided. When done correctly, this method gives both parties 50% of the value of their community property.

The silent auction method starts by making a detailed list of community property that is in dispute. Each person gets a copy of the list, which they use to write down their bid for the items they want. The person with the highest bid gets each item, then each person totals up the assigned value of all of their items. The person with the higher value must make a cash equalization payment to ensure that all community property has been divided evenly.

How Can We Help?

Please call our office at (626) 683-8113 or email us at if you are in need of legal representation during your California divorce. Our team of skilled Pasadena divorce lawyers is eager to assist with any issues that you may encounter regarding the division of your marital assets.