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My niece, in Maryland, is soon to be married to a twice-divorced man who owns his own home and is still paying a mortgage.

My niece, who has been divorced once, has two children and lives in a home where her ex-husband and she pay the mortgage. The house is in her ex-husband's name, and he is on the mortgage deed and pays the EMI. My niece gives him her share as half the EMI.

One option my niece is looking at is to continue to stay in her current house, and her would-be husband would move in. I don't know how it would work if the new husband would move into her house while her ex-husband is still on the mortgage. (He left the family, and she got the house to live in.)

The other option: Her would-be husband is persuading her to move into his home, saying the rooms are bigger, etc.

Questions:

  1. If she would move into the new husband's home, what precautions should she take? Should she insist that he put her name on the mortgage and the house deed?
  2. Is it true that you don't need to add your name to a mortgage loan or house deed as it's considered community property and both [my niece and her ex-husband] are entitled to it?
  3. Is it advisable for my niece to stay in her current home to keep the possession of house as she is not on deed? The worry is if things go wrong for my niece with her would-be husband, she may not be left with a place to stay.

I just want her to protect her interests, especially from someone who has been divorced two times.

Should she seek legal advice before she makes this decision, and is her would-be husband pressuring her for the wrong reasons?

  • I am in no way asking for someone to be a mind reader. It's difficult to reduce this into a core question without describing the situation. I was not aware there are rules like this as this is the first time I have used this site. Does this have to be edited or is it just a suggestion? – Parkchuck Sep 29 '16 at 23:05
  • @Parkchuck I'd condense the question and split into paragraphs. Some users on here would not read your question as is thus resulting in less answers. – NuWin Sep 29 '16 at 23:51
  • Can you indicate the country and state. – Dheer Sep 30 '16 at 3:09
  • the question about "considered community property" can only be answered if me know the country and state. – mhoran_psprep Sep 30 '16 at 12:43
  • Thank you Ben Miller and NuWin for being so kind and helpful--I appreciate it so much--To Dheer: The country is USA and state is Maryland – Parkchuck Sep 30 '16 at 17:56
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Should she seek legal advice before she makes this decision

Yes.

It seems like there are a lot of questions in here. She should determine her status on the mortgage and deed for the home she and her ex-husband currently reside. Additionally, if she was married and divorced, she should understand her divorce agreement; specifically areas relating to custody, child support that may be owed to her (or that she may owe), alimony payments, and ownership of the home.

Community property laws may or may not apply in your jurisdiction, and they may or may not be superseded by a divorce agreement. She should talk to a local lawyer.

  • A local lawyer and her divorce decree should answer what options she has with regard to the previous house and the 'community property' question. Third question assumes the worst, you should probably reserve your feelings on this matter. She's divorced too. The divorce process will sort out who gets what if it does not work out between them. One thing they should consider is possibly refinancing and adding her to mortgage and the deed for two reasons. One is if the interest rates are better now, they can improve their financial situation. The other is avoiding probate if one of them dies. – Xalorous Sep 30 '16 at 18:32
  • Thank you Xalorous--something to think of --appreciate it! – Parkchuck Oct 1 '16 at 3:41

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