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Met with a lawyer: few financial questions

Old 10-23-2014, 08:13 AM
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Met with a lawyer: few financial questions

So, I met with lawyer number 2 but I think I'm going to go with lawyer number 1 since she was a flat fee lawyer and I'm afraid that my fees with number 2 would go sky high when dealing with divorcing AH. I doubt this will be quick and easy....maybe I'm wrong, but based on his behaviors in the past I'm guessing he will pull all kinds of manipulative stuff to make things harder for us all.

My initial proposal for my AH is that he can keep his 401K and I'll get to keep the house. Obviously, there are things that need to happen, firstly he must agree to it, LOL. Then, he'd have to be the one to move out. The equity in the house is extremely close to what I'd get out of a payout from his 401K but I think I'd be able to do more with the equity from the house since I'm not near retirement age. I'd rather pay capital gains taxes than pay the IRS penalties on cashing out an IRA if it came to that. I'd also have to figure out if I should refinance the house in my name only or if he'd be OK staying on the deed and setting a timeframe for me to sell the house so that the debt won't stay on his credit report for too long. My financial background and brain have been working overtime this past week and all I can say is that I am very grateful that my stocks bounced back this week after the debacle on Wall Street last week, ugh!

Anyway, as I walk around the house I keep thinking of labeling what I want to keep and what I 'don't care if he takes'. Here's a question: how on earth did you all split up the house with the A's? I am most likely going to tell him to just take whatever he wants and that I'll figure it out afterwards. Take the TV, take the couches, I don't care....but there are a few things I'd like to keep, you know? Stupid kitchen gadgets, my good stock pots, the vacuum(I'm very attached to my vacuum, LOL), etc.

How did this all shake out for most of you? Am I dreaming thinking that AH will leave willingly? Should I just suck it up and move to a rental and then fight him for half the equity? UGH.....so much to think about!
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Old 10-23-2014, 08:31 AM
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There is a lot to think about. Of course, a lot is what he is willing to do.

As far as separating things, we both made a list of things we really really wanted. We then compiled and both signed that list. Luckily there was really nothing on each others lists that either of us fought for, so that worked out. Other than what I really really wanted, I did not care. He got tired in the moving process so it all worked out really fairly.

Good luck, I hope he agrees and you can move on quietly and quickly.
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Old 10-23-2014, 08:44 AM
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there was nothing left for me and my ex to split in the end as the drinking cost us everything even our kids were put into foster care as neither me nor her could get off the drink

for me its so hard to comprehend why everyone doesnt lose it all like i did ? i only wish i could of saved my kids if nothing else
however once i did finaly get sober i soon got a job and got my kids back and became a single parent
at one time i had a business and over 100k uk in the bank and it all went like i said thanks to the drink along with everything else i loved or cared about

well done for getting out early
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Old 10-23-2014, 08:48 AM
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When I got divorced, my ex-husband (who isn't an A), refused to move out, and basically refused to engage me in any discussions about dividing up anything. Ultimately, I accepted that if I wanted to leave, I would have to be the one to do the leaving and I would be able to take very little with me. I took my own personal belongings and my dog, and a little less than half of the girls' toys and clothes. I left with no bedroom furniture for myself, no bedroom furniture for the girls (except one dresser, which my parents bought for my oldest when she was born), no living room furniture except a chair, etc. Our dining table was a card table and four chairs. I did take the scrapbooks/baby books, which I had done all the work on.

Of course, at the time I had a high-paying job, so putting together the money to leave and re-stock certain essential items like dishes and silverware wasn't such a big deal.

My suggestion is to talk it out with the lawyer you choose to engage. I suspect that the lawyer will suggest making an initial offer to your AH and giving him a hard deadline to respond. If he fails to do so, then be prepared to move out and fight for the equity from a distance. Hope for the best, prepare for the worst.
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Old 10-23-2014, 09:04 AM
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Wisconsin, I just rented a storage space unit for that very reason. I am decluttering the house. Old comforters, towel sets, old dish sets, etc are getting boxed up and stored there. Basically, I'm hoping that if I have to be the one to leave, I can use the storage area as a holding area for furniture I find on craigslist, etc. That way, if I'm in transition or I know it's coming, I can hold the furniture there for future use and it helps me spread the cost instead of having to buy everything all at once. UGH, I am such a disaster preparer, LOL! I guess it comes in handy in cases like this!

Based on what happened last year when AH wanted to buy that house, I have a feeling that I might have to be the one to go first. Kinda ticks me off to think about it. Financially, it makes the most SENSE (most As don't think along the lines of what makes sense, though, do they?) for me to stay in the house and for him to keep his 401K. The lawyer told me this is a common settlement she's done many times for clients. Praying and hoping that AH will see that this is beneficial for all.
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Old 10-23-2014, 09:18 AM
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I'd also have to figure out if I should refinance the house in my name only or if he'd be OK staying on the deed and setting a timeframe for me to sell the house so that the debt won't stay on his credit report for too long.
If you have a background in finance, you know this much better than I do -- but I would be worried about having any financial entanglements remaining after the divorce. I've just seen very strange situations occur...

As for "who gets what" -- My lawyer suggested I make a list of suggestions of how to divide household property, and then value everything according to garage sale prices (because you don't get to count full value) and make sure it was even. My ex was very bitter and vengeful, and insisted on splitting matching things -- he wanted to keep the bed and the matching dresser, but I could get the matching vanity, for example. In the end, I settled for whatever he wanted to give up. The only things that really mattered to me were heirlooms, and I just listed those as my personal property and not up for dividing -- and that worked.
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Old 10-23-2014, 12:50 PM
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Originally Posted by lillamy View Post
If you have a background in finance, you know this much better than I do -- but I would be worried about having any financial entanglements remaining after the divorce. I've just seen very strange situations occur...

As for "who gets what" -- My lawyer suggested I make a list of suggestions of how to divide household property, and then value everything according to garage sale prices (because you don't get to count full value) and make sure it was even. My ex was very bitter and vengeful, and insisted on splitting matching things -- he wanted to keep the bed and the matching dresser, but I could get the matching vanity, for example. In the end, I settled for whatever he wanted to give up. The only things that really mattered to me were heirlooms, and I just listed those as my personal property and not up for dividing -- and that worked.
Yeah, I am worried about that part, too. Yet, if I live here and take responsibility for the house with his name on it, then he has to trust that I will pay the mortgage, too. My background is in stocks and investing, not so much in mortgages, deeds, and settlements for divorces, LOL!

I just started making a list of what I wanted. It's not much. I really don't care anymore. I am just ready to start a new chapter of my life as a single mom.
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Old 10-23-2014, 12:53 PM
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Originally Posted by lizatola View Post

I just started making a list of what I wanted. It's not much. I really don't care anymore. I am just ready to start a new chapter of my life as a single mom.
It's amazing how the more you want to leave, the shorter your list of "non-negotiables" becomes...

((HUGS))
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Old 10-23-2014, 02:17 PM
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Most of the household items were split up well before the divorce was final so the divorce papers just said it was already done and we agreed with it. The papers indicated I kept the car, the house would be sold and split 50/50, I paid none of his school loans but he got my 401K. His very small retirement had already been cashed out and spent.

There was very little arguing about the household items. None really but I will follow that up with the fact that our household items held very little value. He didn't care and didn't really have much of a plan of where or how to live so he didn't care. Put the things I set aside for him in storage or through them out. He kept all the 'man' things for his hobbies and I was fine by that although there was probably more money in that than all the rest combined
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Old 10-23-2014, 04:39 PM
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Make a list of everything you own together & record it with your lawyer.
Mark what you would like on that list.
Have your lawyer send it to his lawyer & then take it from there.
Don't count on too much cooperation or a speedy closure.
Try not to predict what may happen, just liaise with your lawyer, let her do what needs doing & then wait for the response.
You will drive yourself crazy trying to work it out in your head, believe me I've been there done that.
For me I got to the point where we were on good terms, we had some agreed items in writing & we were to agree on the rest.
I should've known better because after that doc was signed I didn't get a single thing back.
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Old 10-23-2014, 05:49 PM
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remove your name from joint credit cards ASAP.
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Old 10-23-2014, 09:11 PM
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Liz, from my experience, it is better to make the divorce complete and not stay in any kind of financial or legal joint arrangement. What is done in the divorce is legally enforceable, and what is left to do afterwards, has no legal power of enforcement. It leaves you open to re-negotiation, and if he continues downward in his alcoholism, that could be very problematic. I expect that it will be enough to deal with co-parenting.

Hugs,
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Old 10-23-2014, 10:22 PM
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Originally Posted by ShootingStar1 View Post
Liz, from my experience, it is better to make the divorce complete and not stay in any kind of financial or legal joint arrangement. What is done in the divorce is legally enforceable, and what is left to do afterwards, has no legal power of enforcement. It leaves you open to re-negotiation, and if he continues downward in his alcoholism, that could be very problematic. I expect that it will be enough to deal with co-parenting.

Hugs,
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Yeah, the lawyer and I talked about this. She said she'd write in a clause where I'd agree to sell the house in a certain amount of time after the divorce is final: most likely within the year.

I wouldn't plan on staying here for very long unless I was working full time or unless I had some miraculous windfall of cash, LOL. My other option is to refinance the house in my name only but I have to call the mortgage company and see how viable that would be since I don't have an income source and I don't know what the courts would have him pay in support.
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Old 10-23-2014, 11:24 PM
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Originally Posted by desypete View Post
there was nothing left for me and my ex to split in the end as the drinking cost us everything even our kids were put into foster care as neither me nor her could get off the drink

for me its so hard to comprehend why everyone doesnt lose it all like i did ? i only wish i could of saved my kids if nothing else
however once i did finaly get sober i soon got a job and got my kids back and became a single parent
at one time i had a business and over 100k uk in the bank and it all went like i said thanks to the drink along with everything else i loved or cared about

well done for getting out early
My AM has lost everything except for her alcoholic, enabling, completely useless boyfriend. My dad left her when I was 3. She retired so she wouldn't be fired and lose her civil service pension (a considerable amount, since she was a GS-15 at retirement). Then she lost me and her grandkids. After that was losing her own mother (who was her cash cow) and her sister. Then my sister. Then most of our neighbor friends who found out the truth about our family when grandma moved out. The house was auctioned off in August. So it took almost 30 years, but she did, indeed, lose everything.

Liz- I remember when I first saw one of your posts here. We haven't always seen eye-to-eye, but I've always been rooting for you to find your own happiness. That could be with or without your AH. I admire your courage and your backbone in dealing with the current circumstances. And I'm glad I'm a certified tax preparer, or half of your OP would be like reading Greek. Lol
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Old 10-24-2014, 03:49 AM
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I agree with shootingstar1 tis best to untangle it all. If he has an attorney with a lick of sense he will be advised to get his name off the mortgage anyway.

As long as his name is on it you are open to having to deal with his BS - for instance if he decides to buy another house or applies for a loan for whatever reason his credit report is going to show an obligation that might preclude him from being able to get a loan in the amount he wants. Then you have to deal with re-negociation or raging phone calls and the like.

If at anytime he files Bankruptcy and your names are locked together on a mortgage you are going to have some problems. Contracts supersede divorce decrees. It may be a very unlikely scenario for you to imagine but it happens all…the…time. When I worked in Bankruptcy and Foreclosure I had to deal with tearful hysterical ex-spouses that were being dragged into their former spouses financial BS inclusive of the bankruptcy Trustee looking at the equity in a house that the Bankruptor was no longer living in, maybe for 10 years plus, but was still on the mortgage.

The only way I would do it if I were you would be if he would quit-claim his interest in the house back to you.
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Old 10-24-2014, 07:18 AM
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Originally Posted by redatlanta View Post
I agree with shootingstar1 tis best to untangle it all. If he has an attorney with a lick of sense he will be advised to get his name off the mortgage anyway.

As long as his name is on it you are open to having to deal with his BS - for instance if he decides to buy another house or applies for a loan for whatever reason his credit report is going to show an obligation that might preclude him from being able to get a loan in the amount he wants. Then you have to deal with re-negociation or raging phone calls and the like.

If at anytime he files Bankruptcy and your names are locked together on a mortgage you are going to have some problems. Contracts supersede divorce decrees. It may be a very unlikely scenario for you to imagine but it happens all…the…time. When I worked in Bankruptcy and Foreclosure I had to deal with tearful hysterical ex-spouses that were being dragged into their former spouses financial BS inclusive of the bankruptcy Trustee looking at the equity in a house that the Bankruptor was no longer living in, maybe for 10 years plus, but was still on the mortgage.

The only way I would do it if I were you would be if he would quit-claim his interest in the house back to you.
Yeah, I thought about having him sign a quit claim on the deed. I doubt he'd be open to it. I am currently fixing things around the house, including remodeling our pool which took a beating when it was a foreclosure a few years ago (before we bought it) so that I can improve the resale value on the home and so that it can sell faster with a remodeled pool. AH didn't want to spend the money but he must have known deep down that I was right because he finally agreed to spending the 10K on it. I think he knows we won't get a good offer if the show piece of our yard looks like crap, LOL.

I know there's a chance that I will have to sell the house ASAP so I am trying to take care of the little things around here and that's why I got the storage rental. And, yes, if he were to go buy a home of his own,this mortgage would show as a debt and would affect his credit rating. Currently, we both have close to an 800 credit score and I know he prides himself in his credit rating.

I personally can't see him filing for bankruptcy, especially since he's due to get his family inheritance next year which will be a decent amount of money. If anything, I can see that I might have to file for bankruptcy if I don't budget properly or if I can't find work eventually! Either way, it wouldn't be good for either of us to stay tied to each other for long. That's why the lawyer told me we'd probably have an agreement that I would sell the house within a certain period of time, usually 1 year. Believe me, i want to get on with my life and if that means I have to move, so be it!
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