Divorce situation regarding a house bought during divorce

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Divorce situation regarding a house bought during divorce

I bought a house wile we were in the process of separating/divorce. Before I bought the house I made sure to have her sign paper saying that that property was not part of marital property she agreed and sign them. The money used to buy the property was from a home equity loan from another property that we bought before getting married . Now she claims that that property is marital even if she sign paper recognizing as not marital. Do I have any legal battle here or is just wasted time in legal fees? I feel like i have been entrapped I would not have bought that property if she had not signed pap

Asked on June 19, 2009 under Family Law, New York

Answers:

S.J.H., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

there are a lot of questions that need to be answered before the proper advice can be given but under New York Law any property acquired during the marriage is considered marital property regardless as to whose name it is in.  Until such time as a divorce is filed or a separation agreement filed, property is considered marital. This means that your wife would in theory have a claim to the recently purchased house ( as well as any costs of maintaining it). If the agreement she signed was properly acknowledged in the manner needed to record a deed, you can argue that this was a valid post-nuptial agreement and thus her rights terminated at that time. Most agreements done without attorneys are not usually properly acknowledged so I would assume it would not hold up legally. However it could be used to argue motive and intent on her part and whether she agreed to it or not, which would have some relevance as to whether she should get a particular percentage.  Also, You said the monies used to purchase was on a premarital house that you both owned. This would mean that her money was used and therefore she could get some recoupment of this money. Like I said, there are a lot of issues involved and you need to speak with an attorney in your County for a proper game plan on how to proceed.  

B. B., Member, New Jersey Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

You need a lawyer.  One place you can find a qualified divorce attorney near you is our website:  http://attorneypages.com

There are important differences in the divorce laws and procedure, from one state to another.  I'm not a New York lawyer, and I don't have all the facts of your case, and both are essential to getting advice you can rely on.

How this works out is likely to come down to the details, beginning with how that paper you had her sign was worded.  If she didn't get anything in return for her agreement, it might not be of much use.


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