Read the Law
Assembly Bill 16:  An act to add Sections 274, 782.5, and 4324 to the Family Code, relating to civil actions.
Approved by Governor August 3, 1995.  Filed with Secretary of State August 4, 1995

LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST
AB 16, Rainey.  Exemplary damages.
Existing law provides that where a married person is injured by his or her spouse, as specified, the community
property may not be used to discharge the liability of the tortfeasor spouse to the injured spouse or the liability to
make contribution to a joint tortfeasor until the separate property of the tortfeasor spouse is exhausted, as
specified. This bill would provide that, in addition to any other remedy authorized by law, when a spouse is
convicted of attempting to murder the other spouse, as specified, the injured spouse shall be entitled to 100% of
the community property interest in his or her retirement and pension benefits, and a prohibition of specified
support or insurance benefits from the injured spouse to the other spouse, as specified.  The bill would define
injured spouse for these purposes.  The bill would also authorize a court to award attorney's fees and costs in the
form of a sanction i these cases, as specified.

274.  (a) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, if the injured spouse is entitled to a remedy authorized
pursuant to Section 4324,the injured spouse shall be entitled to an award of reasonable attorney's fees and costs as
a sanction pursuant to this section. (b) An award of attorney's fees and costs as a sanction pursuant to this section
shall be imposed only after notice to the party against whom the sanction is proposed to be imposed and
opportunity for that party to be heard. (c) An award of attorney's fees and costs as a sanction pursuant to this
section is payable only from the property or income of the party against whom the sanction is imposed, except that
the award may be against the sanctioned party's share of the community property.  In order to obtain an award
under this section, the party requesting an award of attorney's fees and costs is not required to demonstrate any
financial need for the award.

782.5.  In addition to any other remedy authorized by law, when a spouse is convicted of attempting to murder the
other spouse, as punishable pursuant to subdivision (a) of Section 664 of the Penal Code, the injured spouse shall
be entitled to an award to the injured spouse of 100 percent of the community property interest in the retirement
and pension benefits of the injured spouse.

4324.  In addition to any other remedy authorized by law, when a spouse is convicted of attempting to murder the
other spouse, as punishable pursuant to subdivision (a) of Section 664 of the Penal Code, the injured spouse shall
be entitled to a prohibition of any temporary or permanent award for spousal support or medical, life, or other
insurance benefits or payments from the injured spouse to the other spouse. As used in this section, "injured
spouse" means the spouse who has been the subject of the attempted murder for which the other spouse was
convicted, whether or not actual physical injury occurred.
THE LAW that I sponsored and that passed in 1995 is presented below.  In 2010, it was modified to include the
crime of solicitation of murder.  In 2012, it was modified to add spousal rape to the list of applicable spousal
crimes.  To read the current version, click the specific underlined sections  in the first sentence below.
Illustrates how
Barbara changed
the law
Copyright 2017, Barbara Bentley.  All rights reserved. No contents can be used without permission from the author.
Illustrates how
Barbara changed
the law
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