Attorney Tiffany Lunn-White is often asked this question: Isn’t the home I purchased during separation my separate property?

The short answer is no.  If you are thinking about purchasing real property (real estate) while you are separated from your spouse but not divorced, you should wait.  Obtain your divorce first so that the waters are not muddied by another asset to take into account. The reasoning is that it is an asset that was still obtained during the marriage whether it was during separation or not.

However, if you have already moved forward and cannot reverse court, do not despair entirely. Generally, the possibility that the asset would be awarded to your spouse is fairly low because it was obtained by you during separation and the court will take factors such as that into account.  Although, you should keep in mind that any equity in the home will likely be taken into consideration as marital assets are divided. If equity is applicable to your situation, you may have to give up more financially then you would have otherwise.

Bottom line:  Beware if you purchase real estate, especially with equity, during separation.

Categories: Divorce

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