Do I have a right to ask for some kind of compensation if I am stuck with a house that I can’t afford?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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Do I have a right to ask for some kind of compensation if I am stuck with a house that I can’t afford?

I have been divorced, officially, for almost 2 years. I have a very reasonable child support/spousal support award. The problem is that this support will end in 2 more years. I am trying to plan ahead for this. I would like to refinance my house but cannot for a couple of reasons. The first is that my credit is shot because my ex-husband filed for bankruptcy because of a small business failure. Since I co-signed for his business loan, I am liable for the

debt. The second reason, which I only found out about after we were divorced, is that I cannot

remove my ex-husband’s name from the mortgage even though I am the primary owner because there is a lien on the house due to tax problems he had with his business.Basically I am trapped in a mortgage I will not be able to cover in 2 years. I can’t refinance because of my credit score and his name still being on the mortgage, and I can’t sell it because of the lien. I’m stuck in a situation of imminent failure. My ex-husband has made no moves to offer helping the situation even though he is the one responsible for them. What the heck can I do?

Asked on June 15, 2016 under Family Law, Ohio


B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

Because of the length of time that has passed, you won't be able to re-negotiate the terms of the divorce to get help with the house.  Your only option may be to get the child support increased over the next couple of years to help with expenses if your ex- is now making more money. 
If your spouse is making less or the same... then you don't want to pursue that option.  You may have to look at a financial advisor to figure out ways to resolve your financial crisis when the child support ends.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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