Thursday, September 18, 2014

Award of House in a Divorce

I'm getting a divorce next year and my name is not on the deed or mortgage only my husband and my mothers name is on the deed and mortgage. She passed last year but I'm the only one named in the will to receive her 5% of the property. Can I tell the judge that I would like to keep them home in my divorce or does my ex husband automatically gets the home since his name is on it ?? I pay more than half of the mortgage and all of the utilities.

Gina Marie Famularo

This is a much more complicated question that it first appears. The first question is whether you have a community property interest in the home. If the house was purchased during marriage, even if you signed a quit-claim deed putting only your husband's name on the house, you may have a community property interest in the house.

If you signed the deed and were a victim of domestic violence and were threatened or coerced into signing over the property, you may be able to set aside the deed. Also, if you signed the deed only for financing purposes and were expecting to have your name put back on the property after the house was purchased, you may have a community property interest.

Secondly, the 5% ownership of your mom's is all yours. Also, was there a down payment on the house? Where did it come from?

You really need to seek the advice of an attorney before it can be determined what your ownership interest is in the house.

Regardless of your ownership interest in the property, you can buy Husband out of his interest in the property if he is agreeable and if you can qualify to refinance the property.          

Friday, September 12, 2014

Custody of teenaged child

I have 50/50 custody of my 16 year old son. I currently pay all of my ex's expenses Rent, food, phone etc. However I can no longer can do that seeing as I just found out that my ex is using drugs and the money I am giving her is not being used to care for him. Do I have to go to court, or can I exercise my right as his father to remove him from her care? I want to care for my son and do not want to support a drug addict.

Since your son is 16 years old, he is what we call an 800 pound gorilla. Do you know the old adage, where does an 800 pound gorilla sleep? Anywhere he wants. So, practically speaking, if your ex is using drugs and your 16 year old doesn't want to go over there any more, he will not be forced to do so, either by the court system or local law enforcement.

The child support is another thing. If you have an order to pay chile support , it is due until paid in full and there is no statute of limitations on collecting the past due money. However, you can discharge your child support by having the child 100% of the time under a case named Marriage of Jackson. This does not help you if you pay support by way of a wage assignment. The only way to get the wage assignment stopped is by going to court. Also, if you want support from your ex, you must go to court for that order.

The long answer is you do not necessarily have to go back to court to obtain custody of your 16 year old child. The short answer is if you want to avoid any potential future problems, keep your son with you, do not send him back to Mom's, and them play it safe and get a court order modifying custody and support.