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FAQs on Divorce and Quitclaim Deeds in Adirondack, NY

FAQs on Divorce and Quitclaim Deeds in Adirondack, NY


When one door closes, another opens; but we often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door that we do not see the one which has opened for us.
 
- Alexander Graham Bell


Q: Will a quitclaim deed release me from the mortgage obligation?

We held equity loans on two separate properties and during our divorce, each property was signed off to its respective owner using a quitclaim deed. My ex has failed to meet his financial obligations and the mortgage company is pursuing me. Am I still liable for this debt, or did the quitclaim deed release my responsibility?

A: A quitclaim deeds affects only how the property is titled. It has no effect on the debts or loan obligations of both husband and wife. You are still responsible to pay for all the joint debts regardless of the division of property during your divorce.

Q: When do I get my spouse's name off the deed and mortgage?

The mortgage for our house was originated in my name only to get a better interest rate, but both our names are listed on the deed. What can I do?

A: It is unusual to have both your names both on the deed and yet only your name on the mortgage. This can only mean that you have the sole responsibility of paying the mortgage and yet he co-owns the house with you.

Q: Is my spouse entitled to any equity if he quit claimed the home to me?

My spouse quit claimed the house to me in order to get it mortgaged since he was not employed at the time. I have always been the main provider for the family, but am worried that in the divorce settlement he will be able to sue for half of the equity in my house. How would the judge decide to divide the equity in my home if I were to divorce?

A: Any property that was purchased during marriage is considered community or marital property. This is divided during your divorce. The portion of the property that each of you would get depends upon state law and on other evidence presented to the court regarding your financial situation.

Q: When do I get my spouses' name off the house deed and mortgage?

My spouse just stated that he wants a divorce. We own a home together and both our names are on the deed itself and the mortgage. My Father is getting a reverse mortgage on his home, to get a lump sum, to pay-off my mortgage in full. How do I go about getting my spouse's name off of the deed to the house?

A: If both spouses agree to the terms of a divorce settlement, a quitclaim deed is the fastest, easiest and least expensive way to remove your spouse's name from the deed to the property. If both spouses do not agree on the settlement of assets and debts, then the court will decide on an equitable division.

Q: Would I be entitled to any profits after signing a quit claim deed?

In our divorce, my ex was awarded the family home and assumes all debt, including the mortgage and agrees to hold me harmless. My ex is in the process of selling the home and asked me to sign a quitclaim Deed to transfer all my rights, title, and interest to him. By signing this document, does this mean that I will get nothing from the house when he sells? Is there anything I can do to make sure that I am not getting a fair deal in this situation?

A: The court has the power to award a property to whomsoever they deem fit. Whoever was awarded this property is the one who can profit from it. If it is not you, then you are required by law to sign a quitclaim deed. You will not get any profits since the property was not awarded to you.

Q: Does my spouse have any say in what I do with the profits if I got the home?

I got the house in the divorce. The deed is now in both my name and my present husband's name. My ex was ordered to make mortgage payments as child support. The house is currently up for sale and my ex is trying to make me put some money from the sale into an account for our 2 children but I need the money to buy a new home. Can he do this since he has already signed away his rights and interest in the house?

A: As long as the court awards you your home, your spouse has no say or claim on what you do with the property.

Q: Can a quitclaim deed keep me from losing my home if my spouse is sued?

We are getting a divorce, but I probably cannot qualify for refinancing for at least 5 years because I'm currently a full-time student with little income. If my husband is sued, can I lose my home? Would a quitclaim deed protect me?

A: Yes, a quitclaim deed can protect you by getting the deed in your own name exclusively. This is possible through a divorce proceeding or your spouse can sign a quitclaim to relinquish his rights to the property. If the mortgage is in your spouse's name, it doesn't mean he has an ownership interest. The bank will go after your spouse in case he cannot pay. The bank may a mortgage lien on the property which does give them rights.

Q: Why is a quitclaim deed required if everything is in my name?

I have been separated for four years and am attempting to sell my house. I am the only person on the title and mortgage, and my partner has never lived in the house nor has made any payments on the mortgage. My former partner is refusing to sign the quitclaim form. Is this form really necessary for me to sell my house?

A: Even if your partner is not on the title, he or she may have legal rights to claim a share in the property based on state laws regarding marital or community property that was accumulated during the marriage. This is the reason a quitclaim deed is needed in order to ensure that the property is free and clear before selling it.

Q: Which party pays for the quitclaim deed?

My ex was ordered to "execute" a quitclaim deed for jointly owned property on Indian owned land. Because of the BIA involvement, the fees are quite expensive ($500+). Who is required to pay them - him or me?

A: The general rule is that the one who files the form is the one paying the fees. Check with the recorder's office in the municipality where the property is located to be sure.

Q: Should I sign the quitclaim prior to closing?

My spouse and I have executed a separation agreement giving me an equity payout upon his refinancing or selling our home. He is in the process of refinancing the mortgage to remove me from loan, which should be approved soon, and is scheduling a closing. Is it okay to sign the quitclaim deed prior to the closing, or would my interests cease once I sign for his refinancing without the quit claim?

A: You should do both simultaneously. You have to be sure that all is complete on both documents. Refinancing will only remove you from the mortgage; quitclaim removes you as the owner.

Q: Who owns the house if my spouse's lawyer is holding the quitclaim deed?

My ex signed the quitclaim deed, but insisted it be held by his attorney. The court granted this in a memorandum. The memorandum also stated his attorney was the trustee of this record. It has been over a month and his attorney has not filed the deed with the county records clerk. It is not valid until it is recorded in the county records. If my ex dies, or loses his job, or the mortgage payments are not made, does his attorney then own the home? Can he sell it as part of estate, because he is the trustee?

A: The attorney can never own the home. The court's order would apply to your spouse's estate.

Q: Can my spouse sell our home if I never signed any type of deed?

I didn't sign a quitclaim when we divorced and my spouse never refinanced the mortgage. Could he legally sell the house without my approval?

A: If your name is listed on the deed, your spouse cannot sell the house without your approval.

Q: Will the judge force me to sign the quitclaim deed?

Would the judge force me to sign a quitclaim deed so my spouse can buy another house during the divorce proceedings?

A: Yes, a court could order that the ownership in the home belongs to your spouse. The court will only order a settlement that it deems to be fair and equitable to both parties. If you and your ex negotiate a fair settlement, the courts are likely to follow your wishes.

Q: What if my spouse refusing to sign the quitclaim deed?

What if my ex refuses to sign the quitclaim deed?

A: If you were awarded by the court a full ownership of a property during your divorce, your ex, is required by the court to sign the quitclaim deed. If they refuse, you can take it back to the court for violating the divorce decree. Your ex will most likely be held in contempt of the court and may even serve time in jail.

Q: Is me ex entitled to enter our home after signing the quitclaim deed?

My ex signed a quitclaim deed transferring ownership to me. I can't refinance for another year. Does he have the right to enter the home?

A: Your ex is not the owner of the house. If their name is not on the deed, they cannot enter without your permission.
 
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