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EricEvans

Divorce - Separate propety now comingled due to buyout from Aunt & title change?

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Before marriage, wife purchased, 50/50 with her Aunt, a condo. Both names were on the title. During the marriage, her Aunt died and for $10 bought out the other 50% from her Aunts estate. The title now has just the wife's name. Since that purchase was made for $10 during marriage for the remaining 50% ownership, does that make any/all of the condo marital property?

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3 hours ago, EricEvans said:

does that make any/all of the condo marital property?

 

No. Your wife owns it as her sole and separate property. That doesn't change.

 

It's the equity in the property that may entitle you to a cash settlement, or some non-cash offset, in the event of a divorce

 

I suspect though that there was more of your wife's earnings that went into supporting the condo than just the $10.

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On 5/10/2019 at 2:16 AM, adjusterjack said:

 

No. Your wife owns it as her sole and separate property. That doesn't change.

 

It's the equity in the property that may entitle you to a cash settlement, or some non-cash offset, in the event of a divorce

 

I suspect though that there was more of your wife's earnings that went into supporting the condo than just the $10.

 

 

Can you explain what you mean by the equity in the property?

 

Since she decided to buy out the other 50% ownership for $10, rather than selling her 50%, during the marriage, wouldnt that mean the real estate transaction done during marriage for a fee (even just the $10 fee she paid for the other 50%) makes that 50% purchase joint owned in the marriage as well as all improvements she has made on it, such as new central air, total bathroom renovation, etc? 

 

Therefore in a divorce, isnt the 50% she purchased during the marriage  not separate property but property to be split?

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When you start talking about "property to be split" you bring into question the state where this is occurring.  In a community proprty state the property can be "split".  In a state where the proprty is divided by equitable distribution, the question is not so simple.  You did not name the state so we don't know what rule applies.

 

When you identify the state, perhaps youmight also give us a clue as to why you did not "tag" the state as requested on the originalemtry screen.  Recently few people are identifying the stste. 

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4 hours ago, RetiredinVA said:

When you start talking about "property to be split" you bring into question the state where this is occurring.  In a community proprty state the property can be "split".  In a state where the proprty is divided by equitable distribution, the question is not so simple.  You did not name the state so we don't know what rule applies.

 

When you identify the state, perhaps youmight also give us a clue as to why you did not "tag" the state as requested on the originalemtry screen.  Recently few people are identifying the stste. 

 

 

New York State

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New Yorkis an "equitable distribution" state.  In a divorce, the court is required to determine the fair distribution of the marital assets.  In your case, the court may very well determine you would have little or no claim to any of the equity in the property your wife and her aunt purchased prior to the marriage.  I would predict you might be allowed a share of the increase in value of the property after the aunt's death until the date of the marriage.  

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16 hours ago, EricEvans said:

Since she decided to buy out the other 50% ownership for $10, rather than selling her 50%, during the marriage, wouldnt that mean the real estate transaction done during marriage for a fee (even just the $10 fee she paid for the other 50%) makes that 50% purchase joint owned

 

No. You have to understand the difference between "ownership" and "marital interest." Her name is on the deed. She owns it. Your marital interest is based on the equity that has accumulated during the marriage.

 

Equity is the current market value of the home less the outstanding balance of any loans. Equity accumulated during the marriage is the current market value less the market value at the time of the marriage less any outstanding loan balances.

 

The purchase of the aunt's 50% for $10 is almost certainly going to be construed by a court as a gift. Gifts are generally the sole and separate property of the recipient.

 

Any marital interest you have in the property is likely to be rather small.

 

 

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4 hours ago, adjusterjack said:

 

No. You have to understand the difference between "ownership" and "marital interest." Her name is on the deed. She owns it. Your marital interest is based on the equity that has accumulated during the marriage.

 

Equity is the current market value of the home less the outstanding balance of any loans. Equity accumulated during the marriage is the current market value less the market value at the time of the marriage less any outstanding loan balances.

 

The purchase of the aunt's 50% for $10 is almost certainly going to be construed by a court as a gift. Gifts are generally the sole and separate property of the recipient.

 

Any marital interest you have in the property is likely to be rather small.

 

 

 

What about items done to the condo such as the bathroom being redone, a new central air conditioner, new appliances, TAXES PAID, condos feed paid, etc all with marital money.   Does any of those items get split?  Or the fact that the taxes and condo fees were paid with marital money?  (There were no loans on the condo at the time of the marriage)

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1 hour ago, EricEvans said:

What about items done to the condo such as the bathroom being redone, a new central air conditioner, new appliances, TAXES PAID, condos feed paid, etc all with marital money.   Does any of those items get split?  Or the fact that the taxes and condo fees were paid with marital money?

 

Improvements to the property would probably count in the equation but taxes and condo fees don't count any more than paying for water, electric, food and clothing. Those are day to day living expenses that everybody pays.

 

 

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