Understanding How a House Is Treated in Virginia Divorce Cases


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Divorce usually leads to a division of property with a judge overseeing the matter and determining if any other processes are necessary between the two spouses. However, in various states around the country, there are certain specifics that may change what procedure occurs and who is responsible for which processes in the divorce.

Houses are one of the biggest purchases a couple accomplish when settling down in an area. In Virginia, there are only a few options based on the circumstances with the home. The spouses may sell the real estate and split the proceeds, or one party may purchase the otherís interest in the home. Another option is possible if both spouses have their names attached to both the deed and mortgage. In these situations, the split happens through a refinance. The decision of which option to take depends on who wants to keep the home. The property is sold when neither party feels remaining in the house is beneficial.

Treatment of the House

Because the couple have only two options with the third only available through dual signatures, this leads to only so many scenarios occurring. If one party has no actual ownership of the property, he or she may sell the building. However, the laws in Virginia connect the property to martial law. This explains why both parties have access to the proceeds. They have the rights and interests tied into the property even if only one signature is on the deed. Though, this may not stop the sale, both husband and wife provide the other with part or half of the income from sales.

Because the options are so limited in scope, the couple may take time to determine the best course of action even before the divorce is final. If both names are on the deed, this may lead to a refinance situation. However, usually one party may take possession of the property. The husband or wife will then sell the rights to the real estate to the other. If there are not enough assets or monetary compensation to pay for spousal support or alimony, the home is usually sold in these instances. The property used as a bargaining chip could lead to circumstances where the other spouse does not need to provide alimony or spousal support.

Mortgages in Virginia

When the house has one or more mortgages, it is usually more beneficial to have no signature on the deed. This would prevent mortgages companies seeking payment for the loan with the spouse that has no legal responsibility. Any foreclosure would not affect this person and any credit is free of problems. The other party may need to continue the mortgage without a second income unless the property is sold prior to any possible foreclosure activity. Free of responsibility of payments, the spouse not on the deed may dodge needing to add to the mortgage payments in the future after a divorce is final.

Keeping the House

While it is often more beneficial to sell a property in a divorce case in Virginia, sometimes one party wants to keep the house. If this is the case, the other party may sell interests in the home to the spouse. Then, the wife or husband gets the house while the other has monetary benefits and may pursue other real estate accommodations. This also removes the need for a realtor, real estate agent, setting up the house for sale, taking photographs and speaking to prospective buyers. There are less worries when the house is kept by one of the spouses after divorce finalizes.

Cooperating through the Divorce

When both parties are agreeable during the divorce proceedings, it is possible to cooperate to a resolution for the house and all other matters. However, it is still important to hire a lawyer to ensure no other problems arise. Selling interests of the house, keeping the home or selling it to another party are all beneficial in some manner. It is best to communicate what the best course of action for everyone involved will be. Then, the former spouses may move on and get on with life.

Legal Help in Virginia with the House

When both spouses want to keep the house, it is usually better to sell it. With a legal representative helping in the case, the spouse may ensure a beneficial conclusion to the divorce. A Virginia lawyer may assist in these matters and will protect the rights of his or her client.

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Disclaimer: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, it is not intended to provide legal advice as individual situations will differ and should be discussed with an expert and/or lawyer.

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