If I lived in my house for 6 years before I knew my wife and we have been married 2 years, could I lose my house in a divorce?

Get Legal Help Today

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

If I lived in my house for 6 years before I knew my wife and we have been married 2 years, could I lose my house in a divorce?

Asked on October 29, 2012 under Family Law, Indiana

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

If you live in a community property state, community property is property acquired during marriage.  Community property also includes income during marriage.  Each spouse has a one half interest in the community property.

Separate property is property acquired before marriage or after the marriage ends.  Separate property also includes income before marriage or after the marriage ends.  A spouse has no claim to the other spouse's separate property.

Since you purchased the house before marriage, it is your separate property and your spouse has no claim to the house.  However, if you paid the mortgage with income during marriage, that income is community property and your spouse has a one half interest in those mortgage payments made during marriage from income during marriage.  If you paid the mortgage during marriage with income earned before marriage, those mortgage payments are your separate property and your spouse has no claim.  If improvements were made to the house during marriage from income during marriage, the enhanced value of the home from those improvements is community property, and your spouse would have a one half interest in the value of those improvements.  If improvements were made to the house during marriage from your income before marriage, the enhanced value of the home from those improvements is separate property because they were made from income before marriage.  As separate property, your spouse has no claim to the value of those improvements.

If you don't live in a community property state, other rules may be applicable.


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 AttorneyPages.com 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.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption