Who Has To Move, Him Or Her?

By Robin Roshkind, Esquire, West Palm Beach, Florida

Many couples going through a divorce  just don’t have the funds for separate residences.  It is cheaper (not easier) to stay under one roof, until the divorce is final and the issue of the marital home is decided by the judge or agreed to by the parties.

For those couples  lucky enough to have assets, or those in two income families, it is easier (not cheaper) to live separately and apart pending divorce proceedings.  So how do couples decide who shall stay and who shall go?

First, you don’t lose your marital rights to the marital residence merely by moving out, if your name is on the deed or on the lease.  The remaining party has no right to change the locks unless by agreement of the parties or court order.

Secondly, if there are children, it is understandable that they are going through enough changes during divorce.  They should remain, if at all possible, in a stable home environment.  So who is going to be the parent who will be or continue to be the major caregiver?    It is that parent who should stay, as it is in the best interests of the children.

On the other hand, there are cases whereby only one of the parties can afford to pay the mortgage, maintenance, insurance and taxes.  That is the party who should stay.  The other should go, with or without children in tow.

In cases where neither party can afford the mortgage or expenses of the marital home,  both should move out and rent the home or keep it as an investment property, or you both agree to list the house for sale and stay until it sells.

Lastly, where a home is in foreclosure or short sale status, you both should work it out to stay, because that is in both  your best interests.

In some cases, both parties want the home or neither husband nor wife wants the home.  Every case is different.  If the spouses cannot agree, the divorce court judge will decide for you both.

 

 

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What Does A Quit Claim Deed Do?

By Robin Roshkind, Esquire, West Palm Beach, Florida

In divorce settlement cases, we often use a legal instrument called a quit claim deed to convey real estate between married couples getting a divorce.  The facts are as follows:  Either the husband or the wife decides/agrees to convey his/her interest in the marital home (or any other real estate) to the other party.

For example, let’s just say the husband is going to take a job offer out of state.  He is willing to convey his interest in the marital home , while concurrently, the wife will refinance the mortgage to remove his name from the liability and provide him with a buy out check for his half of the market value of the home.   In this example, the quit claim deed awards the wife the home in its entirety while the concurrent refinancing removes the husband from the debt service and provides cash for his share.

In cases where refinancing is not possible, due to no equity in the home or the wife in this example does not otherwise qualify, then the lawyers will hold the quit claim deed in escrow until such time as there is a refinance.  Quit claim deeds are instruments of conveyance of real estate, and should be recorded in the property records department in the jurisdiction where the property is located. For more information about this or other divorce topics, call one of the divorce lawyers at ROBIN ROSHKIND, P.A. at 561 835 9091 or click on the Firm’s web site at http://www.familylawwpb.com.

 

Meddling In Laws and Your Divorce

Meddling In Laws and Your Divorce.

What You Come Into The Marriage With You Leave With

by Robin Roshkind, Esquire, West Palm Beach, Florida

Generally speaking, what you come into the marriage with you leave the marriage with even if it is years later…UNLESS you have “commingled” your assets to make them marital.

What this means is if you had a home prior to the marriage and sold that house and used the net proceeds to purchase a new home during the marriage, you would get your initial downpayment back in divorce court, before any remaining net assets are divided between the parties.  Or another example,  if you owned a BMW prior to the marriage, and then during the marriage traded it in for a newer model, and a divorce is imminent, you would be able to leave the marriage with your newer car.

In thinking about divorce, it is best to try to pay off all the marital debt with marital assets prior to filing for divorce.  It is also a good idea prior to the wedding to take stock of what you are bringing into the marriage and how you can keep your pre marital assets outside of the marital estate.   One really great vehicle to accomplish this is the prenuptial agreement which requires financial disclosure.

For more information about this or other divorce topics, call one of the divorce lawyers at ROBIN ROSHKIND, P.A. at 561 835 9091 or click on the Firm’s web site at www.familylawwpb.com.

Whose Name It’s In Doesn’t Matter In Divorce

by Robin Roshkind, Esquire, West Palm Beach, Florida

Many of my clients have a misconceptions about whose property is whose when it comes to divorce in Palm Beach County.    For example, a Mercedes Benz was purchased during the marriage with funds from a joint bank account.  The car is titled in the husband’s name only.  Whose car is it in the division of marital assets?  Barring any prenuptial or post nuptial agreement that says otherwise, it is viewed by the court as marital property.  Just because the title is in the husband’s name only, does not mean it belongs solely to the husband.  Ultimately it might go to him in the equitable distribution scheme of the divorce, but it is not necessarily his just because of the title designation.

Another example is the marital home.   Suppose one of the spouses owned the home prior to the marriage, let’s say it’s the wife.  Once the marriage takes place, she refuses to put the home into joint names.    When they get divorced years later, the husband still has an equitable interest in the home from the day of the wedding until the date of the divorce filing even though his name is not on the deed.    For other examples of title interests in divorce law in the state of Florida, call one of the divorce lawyers at ROBIN ROSHKIND, P.A. at 561 835 9091 or click on the Firm’s web site at http://www.familylawwpb.com.

Can A Cheating Spouse Be Punished By Florida Divorce Courts?

by Robin Roshkind, Esquire, West Palm Beach, Florida

Sitting in my office, listening to potential divorce clients, it seems like no one is having sex within their marriage.  They are either sex deprived, or they or their spouse are cheating on the side.

To some extent, the Florida law protects cheaters, directing the “cheated upon” spouse to simply divorce the cheater.   That’s what is meant when we divorce lawyers say Florida is a “no fault” state.    However, the law does protect an innocent spouse from dissipation of marital assets.   What that means is if a cheater is spending significant sums of marital monies on the affair, that so called dissipation of marital assets can be considered in the financial scheme of the divorce.  There may be an unequal equitable distribution given in favor of the innocent spouse by the divorce court judge.

Case law defines significant sums as: buying a girl friend an expensive car, paying her rent, buying a condo for the paramour, taking numerous expensive vacations or shopping trips, all the usual but expensive trappings of keeping a lover.   A casual dinner out does not qualify.

If you suspect your spouse is the cheating kind, call one of the divorce lawyers at ROBIN ROSHKIND, P.A. at 561 835 9091 or click on the Firm’s web site at http://www.familylawwpb for more information.  We may want to put a private eye on your spouse and use that testimony and evidence in court to get you the better part of the marital estate.

What Happens If You Reconcile After Signing A Marital Settlement Agreement?

By Robin Roshkind, Esquire, West Palm Beach, Florida

You have filed for divorce.  You and your spouse both have hired divorce lawyers.  You have produced documents.  You have gone to mediation and settled your divorce case.  Both of you have signed the marital settlement agreement dividing up the property and debt.  What happens if you both want to reconcile and stay married?

You can abate the proceedings, meaning putting the case on hold for a short time certain.   You can totally dismiss your divorce case, as if it never existed.  BUT the terms of the marital settlement agreement stay in place and are enforceable in court under contract.

We divorce lawyers sometimes use this as a tactic for a spouse who is controlled by the other spouse through money.  In this way, the assets and debts are divided, and alimony support is in place.  If you choose to stay married and reconcile, the “have not” spouse now has.

For more information about this or other divorce tactics, call one of the divorce lawyers at ROBIN ROSHKIND, P.A. at 561 835 9091 or click on the Firm’s web site at http://www.familylawwpb.com.