If a married couple purchase a 2nd property but it is only in the husband’s name at the time, does the wife have any rights to it?

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If a married couple purchase a 2nd property but it is only in the husband’s name at the time, does the wife have any rights to it?

It was to be sold in the divorce agreement to pay off the wife but was not sold.

Asked on August 1, 2011 New Jersey

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

The general rule regarding property purchased during the marriage with marital funds is that it is considered to be marital property regardless of whose name the title is held.  The exception to the rule is where is it purchased with separate property - money that is inherited or from the sale of separate property - then the property remains separate even if the parties are married (and there is not an intent for it to be considered marital property). SO the answer to your question is yes, it is marital property unless and until it is proven separate property.  But how it relates to your agreement is difficult to know without reading it fully.  Ask your attorney for help.  Good luck.

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

The general rule regarding property purchased during the marriage with marital funds is that it is considered to be marital property regardless of whose name the title is held.  The exception to the rule is where is it purchased with separate property - money that is inherited or from the sale of separate property - then the property remains separate even if the parties are married (and there is not an intent for it to be considered marital property). SO the answer to your question is yes, it is marital property unless and until it is proven separate property.  But how it relates to your agreement is difficult to know without reading it fully.  Ask your attorney for help.  Good luck.


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