What happens to my joint marital residence in a divorce?
In this video Memphis attorney Curt Runger answered the question of what will happen to your marital residence during the divorce process. View the video below or see the transcript to hear Curt’s response to this crucial divorce question that could affect your family.
Hi my name is Curt Runger and I’m an attorney in Memphis, Tennessee and I help my clients navigate through the oftentimes difficult divorce process by protecting what’s most important to them, their minor children and their assets, so one issue that routinely comes up in divorce cases involves the marital residence, what is going to happen to your house. And the answer is, there’s only really a couple of things that can happen so if you and your spouse, own a house together and both of your names on the deed, both of your names are on the mortgage, you’re typically going to have a couple different options. The first option is that the property can be sold, and the proceeds from the sale can be equitably divided between husband and wife. Now, equitably divided does not necessarily mean 50% to a husband or 50% of wife. It simply means that those proceeds, if any, can be divided between the parties. The other thing that can happen is if one party wants to keep the house and the other party is agreeable to them, keeping the house, then the party is going to keep the house can actually refinance the loan on the property to remove the other spouses name from any indebtedness and then pay the spouse who’s giving up their interest in the marital residence. That spouses portion of the net equity in the property if there is any at that point in time typically what will happen is the spouse who’s giving up their ownership interest will execute what’s called a quitclaim deed, which is indeed in which they essentially waive any at all right title and interest they have in the Real Property over to the spouse who’s keeping the property. Now a pitfall that happens and unfortunately I’ve seen it happen many times in my legal career is poor draftsmanship on the part of attorneys, and what I mean is the last thing that you ever want to have happen if you own a piece of property with your spouse is to convey your interest in a piece of property by assigning over a quitclaim deed, without having assurances in place that your name is going to be removed from the indebtedness because what can happen is you sign over a quitclaim deed so you have no ownership interest in the property anymore. But if your name is still on the note because your spouse has not refinance and your spouse for whatever reason just doesn’t pay the mortgage even though he or she has said that they have to do that in the divorce paperwork, the bank does not care, the bank could not care less about your marital dissolution agreement with your spouse, they’re going to come after you so long as you are still on the note in the event that your spouse fails to pay the note, if you have any other questions about the divorce process in Tennessee please give me a call.
If you have any further questions do not hesitate to call Curt or his team at Douglass & Runger, PLLC at 901-388-5805 relating to other questions you may have about the divorce process.
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For more information about our firm and our approach to the practice of elder law, contact our office. Call (901) 388-5805 to schedule a confidential consultation and case review today. Douglass & Runger, Attorneys at Law, serve clients throughout Memphis, Shelby County, and the surrounding areas.