When Making Major Purchases With Your Ex-Spouse, It Is Best To Involve Your Lawyer
Remaining on good terms with your ex-spouse and helping each other in whatever ways you can after your divorce is an admirable goal, especially if you have minor children. The danger is that, continuing to have informal financial entanglements with your ex-spouse can easily get as messy as the problems that caused you to get a divorce in the first place. Divorce judgments, alimony orders, and child support orders, in which the court indicates the fairest and most practical way for former spouses to handle their financial dealings with each other, can go a long way toward preventing conflict, but only if you let them. Making informal financial plans and agreements with your ex-spouse after divorce can sabotage the solutions you agreed on in court. Even if you still think of your ex-spouse as a friend and family member, your financial involvement with your ex should be strictly business, and just like you do in business dealings, you should work with a lawyer. A Palm Beach County divorce lawyer can help you continue to be a provider for your family after divorce without opening the door to conflict.
When Dad Buys Mom a New House After the Divorce, It Makes Things Simpler for the Children, but More Complicated for the Parents
Mark and Clare divorced in 2011, when their children were still minors, and the court ordered Mark to pay alimony. Shortly after the divorce, Mark moved to Orlando, while Clare remained in the marital home in Merritt Island with the children. The distance made it burdensome for the parents to transport the children from one parent to the other, so the parties agreed that Clare would move to Orlando so the parties would not need to travel so far for co-parenting purposes. Mark lent Clare just over $150,000 to make a down payment on a house in Orlando, and the parties signed a power of attorney authorizing Mark to act on Clare’s behalf in selling or renting the Merritt Island house.
Giving your ex a six-figure loan? Granting your ex power of attorney? Borrowing money from your ex who is still required to pay you alimony? Things went about as well as you might expect, to the point that the parties were still arguing in court in 2018. Among other issues, Clare paid back most of the loan, but she kept an amount of money equivalent to the amount of past-due alimony Mark owed her? The appeals court’s decision does not go into detail about how financially dependent Clare was during the marriage or about the circumstances that led Mark to fall behind on alimony, but it is clear that the parties could have avoided conflict if they had involved the family courts in the issue of Clare relocating to keep the family together.
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