If I got divorced 9 months ago and said I would pay for the car she drives that’s in my name, if she has recently remarried can I get the car back?

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If I got divorced 9 months ago and said I would pay for the car she drives that’s in my name, if she has recently remarried can I get the car back?

Asked on January 3, 2012 under Family Law, Washington

Answers:

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

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

The answer really depends on what your final divorce decree said.  Whatever the judge ordered will control.  Usually cars are divided as property.  So if the car was awarded to her in a divorce decree, she has a greater right of possession, even though the title is in your name.  (Also, if she was awarded the car-- you need to get her to transfer it to her name to reduce the drain on your credit)  Trying to undo a property division after the fact is extremely difficult.  However, if the decree was structured like a support obligtion (meaning you were ordered to provide her transporation), then there is a possibility that you could have that order amended because of a change in circumstances, namely a new means of support.  If the car was not mentioned in the divorce and was purchased before the divorce was final, you will have to go back to the courts to finish the property division issues--because until a judge says who gets what-- both spouses have a right to the property.  If the car was purchased after the divorce, and there are no other orders in place regarding the car or a support obligation, then you are good to go get the car.  As you've probably noticed, several variables can really affect the outcome of this answer.  If there are even more factors that apply to your situation, it would be worth an inexpensive consultation fee with a family law attorney to review your decree and your purchase agreement for the car to make sure that you cause problems for yourself.


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