title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Non-investing personal finance issues including insurance, credit, real estate, taxes, employment and legal issues such as trusts and wills
Post Reply
maria00200
Posts: 90
Joined: Tue Feb 28, 2017 3:49 pm

title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Post by maria00200 » Wed May 10, 2017 6:55 am

I bought my home when I was single in 2003, and I have one child from a previous marriage (live in New York). I remarried since then a couple years ago, but never added my current husband to the title of my home. My question if anyone knows is, when I pass (assuming I pass first which is more likely because I'm older than my husband), I want my home to go all to my child. I wrote up a will recently stating that, but after speaking to a few different lawyers, they all told me different information, so now I'm even more confused. Keep in mind my husband has 2 kids from a previous marriage so we are a blended family. One lawyer told me that my husband would have something like 75% of the equity of my home after I pass, and the rest would go to my child, because we are married so it's automatically his, even if he's not on the title, and doesn't matter what my will says. Another lawyer told me that because it's something I purchased before the marriage, it's legally only mine, and they would follow whatever my will says. I'm super confused. Is there a better way to ensure my child only gets the proceeds of my home (without having to add him as a joint owner because that probably won't be a good idea). I'm just wondering if anyone else had any experience in this, or know of anyone who did.

bsteiner
Posts: 2932
Joined: Sat Oct 20, 2012 9:39 pm
Location: NYC/NJ/FL

Re: title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Post by bsteiner » Wed May 10, 2017 7:35 am

It depends on the extent of your other assets and how you leave them. In New York a surviving spouse is generally entitled to 1/3 of your assets. See New York Estates, Powers & Trusts Law 5-1.1-A.

There are a few exceptions so you may wish to consult with competent counsel.

adamthesmythe
Posts: 1635
Joined: Mon Sep 22, 2014 4:47 pm

Re: title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Post by adamthesmythe » Wed May 10, 2017 10:34 am

> Is there a better way to ensure my child only gets the proceeds of my home

In another state I am familiar with- you can will a house to someone other than your spouse- but you need a spousal signature agreeing to this if the spouse gets less than 50%.

As I see it your problem is- you have done the right thing by consulting a lawyer- the problem is that the lawyers don't agree.

I am guessing that there is nothing "automatic" that cannot be overridden by a document signed by all parties.

Carefreeap
Posts: 2105
Joined: Tue Jan 13, 2015 7:36 pm
Location: SF Bay Area

Re: title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Post by Carefreeap » Wed May 10, 2017 10:47 am

bsteiner wrote:It depends on the extent of your other assets and how you leave them. In New York a surviving spouse is generally entitled to 1/3 of your assets. See New York Estates, Powers & Trusts Law 5-1.1-A.

There are a few exceptions so you may wish to consult with competent counsel.
Are spouses allowed to do an equalization of assets so that the home owning spouse could will the house to her child and in return the husband could have her retirement accounts (assuming they are valued equally)? And if so, how would that agreement be documented, via a post-nup or part of an estate planning document?

User avatar
Pajamas
Posts: 2837
Joined: Sun Jun 03, 2012 6:32 pm

Re: title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Post by Pajamas » Wed May 10, 2017 11:28 am

My understanding as a non-lawyer is that in New York, you can set up your will any way you want to, including omitting your spouse from any inheritance at all.

However, the surviving spouse has a statutory right to receive a certain amount of the estate. The court will award the surviving spouse this amount regardless of what the will instructs, if the surviving spouse requests it to do so. It is nuanced, and the law details exceptions and special treatment of various types of property.

The right of election can be legally waived by a spouse before or after marriage.

A couple of the exceptions are for property owned by one spouse before the marriage and not commingled with joint assets, called "separate property", and for property held jointly with a third party.

Children also have similar rights.

Your problem does seem to be that you are getting different advice from different lawyers. Do either or both specialize in wills, trusts, probate, etc.? If not, you should get a referral for one who does from the New York State or New York City Bar.

Based on what you have said here, the second lawyer seems to have a better grasp of the situation, although it may be that the advice they are giving you is not contradictory but based on different information that you provided to them, or one or both may not have explained things clearly so that you misunderstood.

maria00200
Posts: 90
Joined: Tue Feb 28, 2017 3:49 pm

Re: title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Post by maria00200 » Wed May 10, 2017 1:50 pm

Thanks all for the replies. Yes, both lawyers I talked to specialize in estate planning, wills, etc. which is why I was confused. I think what I will do is look up a different attorney that has been in business for a long time so they know what they're talking about, and see what they say.
In the meantime, I'll just leave my will as is. I guess it wouldn't be the worst thing in the world if my husband got some of the equity, as long as I know my child would get something.

bsteiner
Posts: 2932
Joined: Sat Oct 20, 2012 9:39 pm
Location: NYC/NJ/FL

Re: title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Post by bsteiner » Wed May 10, 2017 2:50 pm

Pajamas wrote:... the surviving spouse has a statutory right to receive a certain amount of the estate. ...
...
A couple of the exceptions are for property owned by one spouse before the marriage and not commingled with joint assets, called "separate property", and for property held jointly with a third party. ...
There's a distinction between separate property and marital property in divorce, but not for the elective share at death. The elective share in New York is 1/3, with certain exceptions: http://codes.findlaw.com/ny/estates-pow ... 1-1-a.html.
Pajamas wrote:... Children also have similar rights. ....
That's generally the case in civil law jurisdictions (most non-English speaking Western countries), but not New York (or, as far as I know, any state).
Pajamas wrote:... Your problem does seem to be that you are getting different advice from different lawyers. Do either or both specialize in wills, trusts, probate, etc.? ...

Based on what you have said here, the second lawyer seems to have a better grasp of the situation, although it may be that the advice they are giving you is not contradictory but based on different information that you provided to them, or one or both may not have explained things clearly so that you misunderstood.
Assuming that the original poster correctly summarized what they said, it's unlikely that either one does.
maria00200 wrote:Thanks all for the replies. Yes, both lawyers I talked to specialize in estate planning, wills, etc. which is why I was confused. I think what I will do is look up a different attorney that has been in business for a long time so they know what they're talking about, and see what they say.

In the meantime, I'll just leave my will as is. I guess it wouldn't be the worst thing in the world if my husband got some of the equity, as long as I know my child would get something.
If you correctly summarized what they said, it's unlikely that either of them does. You should be able to tell whether they do from their bios on their firms' websites.

If you leave him enough other assets to satisfy his elective share, then he won't be able to get a share of the house.

Note that while the statute isn't clear (at least to me), the courts have held that life insurance is not included in the elective share pot.

Also note that the application of the elective share to qualified plan benefits in conjunction with spousal rights under the Retirement Equity Act is complicated. There has been some discussion in the Life Insurance and Employee Benefits committee of the New York State Bar Association's Trusts and Estates section about trying to get legislation enacted that would clarify this. However, there hasn't been any progress on this yet.

User avatar
Pajamas
Posts: 2837
Joined: Sun Jun 03, 2012 6:32 pm

Re: title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Post by Pajamas » Wed May 10, 2017 4:16 pm

bsteiner wrote:
Pajamas wrote:... Children also have similar rights. ....
That's generally the case in civil law jurisdictions (most non-English speaking Western countries), but not New York (or, as far as I know, any state).
Does this not give some rights of inheritance to a child?

http://codes.findlaw.com/ny/estates-pow ... 5-3-1.html

I'm not a lawyer and I don't have children, but it is interesting stuff!

Grt2bOutdoors
Posts: 17254
Joined: Thu Apr 05, 2007 8:20 pm
Location: New York

Re: title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Post by Grt2bOutdoors » Wed May 10, 2017 4:41 pm

maria00200 wrote:Thanks all for the replies. Yes, both lawyers I talked to specialize in estate planning, wills, etc. which is why I was confused. I think what I will do is look up a different attorney that has been in business for a long time so they know what they're talking about, and see what they say.
In the meantime, I'll just leave my will as is. I guess it wouldn't be the worst thing in the world if my husband got some of the equity, as long as I know my child would get something.
Is your new husband willing to execute a document that states he willingly disavows any interest in your home? Assuming he hires independent counsel who reviews document before he executed it in presence of witnesses and notary? That could be another way, since it appears you don't have a prenup.
"One should invest based on their need, ability and willingness to take risk - Larry Swedroe" Asking Portfolio Questions

maria00200
Posts: 90
Joined: Tue Feb 28, 2017 3:49 pm

Re: title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Post by maria00200 » Wed May 10, 2017 6:05 pm

Grt2bOutdoors wrote:
maria00200 wrote:Thanks all for the replies. Yes, both lawyers I talked to specialize in estate planning, wills, etc. which is why I was confused. I think what I will do is look up a different attorney that has been in business for a long time so they know what they're talking about, and see what they say.
In the meantime, I'll just leave my will as is. I guess it wouldn't be the worst thing in the world if my husband got some of the equity, as long as I know my child would get something.
Is your new husband willing to execute a document that states he willingly disavows any interest in your home? Assuming he hires independent counsel who reviews document before he executed it in presence of witnesses and notary? That could be another way, since it appears you don't have a prenup.
No unfortunately he isn't willing to do that. I know it's kind of sneaky on my part, but I just did a will on my own then.

Nate79
Posts: 1447
Joined: Thu Aug 11, 2016 6:24 pm
Location: Portland, OR

Re: title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Post by Nate79 » Wed May 10, 2017 6:17 pm

maria00200 wrote:
Grt2bOutdoors wrote:
maria00200 wrote:Thanks all for the replies. Yes, both lawyers I talked to specialize in estate planning, wills, etc. which is why I was confused. I think what I will do is look up a different attorney that has been in business for a long time so they know what they're talking about, and see what they say.
In the meantime, I'll just leave my will as is. I guess it wouldn't be the worst thing in the world if my husband got some of the equity, as long as I know my child would get something.
Is your new husband willing to execute a document that states he willingly disavows any interest in your home? Assuming he hires independent counsel who reviews document before he executed it in presence of witnesses and notary? That could be another way, since it appears you don't have a prenup.
No unfortunately he isn't willing to do that. I know it's kind of sneaky on my part, but I just did a will on my own then.
Why will he not sign it? He has legal rights to the property.

It's not sneaky, it's dishonest.

JGoneRiding
Posts: 988
Joined: Tue Jul 15, 2014 3:26 pm

Re: title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Post by JGoneRiding » Wed May 10, 2017 11:32 pm

Grt2bOutdoors wrote:
maria00200 wrote:Thanks all for the replies. Yes, both lawyers I talked to specialize in estate planning, wills, etc. which is why I was confused. I think what I will do is look up a different attorney that has been in business for a long time so they know what they're talking about, and see what they say.
In the meantime, I'll just leave my will as is. I guess it wouldn't be the worst thing in the world if my husband got some of the equity, as long as I know my child would get something.
Is your new husband willing to execute a document that states he willingly disavows any interest in your home? Assuming he hires independent counsel who reviews document before he executed it in presence of witnesses and notary? That could be another way, since it appears you don't have a prenup.
Ianal but I would think this commonly called a quit claim would be simplest. Doesn't require a lawyer there is usually a standard state form. Have it notorized and filed with the county clerk for title.

Sandi_k
Posts: 462
Joined: Sat May 16, 2015 11:55 am
Location: SF Bay Area

Re: title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Post by Sandi_k » Thu May 11, 2017 12:48 am

maria00200 wrote:
Grt2bOutdoors wrote:
maria00200 wrote:Thanks all for the replies. Yes, both lawyers I talked to specialize in estate planning, wills, etc. which is why I was confused. I think what I will do is look up a different attorney that has been in business for a long time so they know what they're talking about, and see what they say.
In the meantime, I'll just leave my will as is. I guess it wouldn't be the worst thing in the world if my husband got some of the equity, as long as I know my child would get something.
Is your new husband willing to execute a document that states he willingly disavows any interest in your home? Assuming he hires independent counsel who reviews document before he executed it in presence of witnesses and notary? That could be another way, since it appears you don't have a prenup.
No unfortunately he isn't willing to do that. I know it's kind of sneaky on my part, but I just did a will on my own then.
First, I am not a lawyer, but I don't think you're in the clear.

So you bought the house before you were married, but you don't tell us whether he's been paying on the mortgage, the maintenance or repairs, or improvements, property tax, etc.

If he *has* been paying these things, my belief is that you have allowed him to exert some aspects of ownership, *especially* since he did not sign anything prior to your marriage. It has become a commingled asset. The ownership rights are unlikely to be 50/50, but I would say a reasonable judge would award him *some* ownership percentage if he's been paying the housing bills.

For you to do a will that leaves him out of the home ownership chain may mean absolutely nothing from a legal standpoint, given B. Steiner's summation of NY state law. You've just made a bad situation worse, IMO, if you should die before your husband does.

Grt2bOutdoors
Posts: 17254
Joined: Thu Apr 05, 2007 8:20 pm
Location: New York

Re: title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Post by Grt2bOutdoors » Thu May 11, 2017 6:35 am

Is your house the only asset? Perhaps you can leave other assets to your child?
"One should invest based on their need, ability and willingness to take risk - Larry Swedroe" Asking Portfolio Questions

maria00200
Posts: 90
Joined: Tue Feb 28, 2017 3:49 pm

Re: title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Post by maria00200 » Thu May 11, 2017 6:56 am

well the reason why I wanted it to go to my child is because when I got the house in 2003, my mom helped me with a big chunk of the down payment, and it was her wish for the house to go to my kid when I pass. So this complicates things now. I will have to work something out and have a long talk with my husband, so it's fair for everyone. I was just more curious what the laws were when it came to pre-marital property and new spouses coming in the picture.

User avatar
pondering
Posts: 859
Joined: Fri Jan 30, 2015 11:04 pm
Location: 412-977-3526, originally 718-273-2422

Re: title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Post by pondering » Thu May 11, 2017 7:22 am

Thanks for posting this topic.

It seems like you can't do this independently of your husband, but together you should see an estate planning attorney and work out what is best for you as a couple.
--Robert Sterbal | 412-977-3526 call/text

mouses
Posts: 2452
Joined: Sat Oct 24, 2015 12:24 am

Re: title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Post by mouses » Thu May 11, 2017 8:04 am

Not a lawyer.

Yet another reason to not get married.

I thought those laws about the spouse/children being entitled to a share of the estate were only when a will had not been written. I see that my thought is not correct, however.

I also read that getting married invalidates a will unless the will was made with the marriage in mind.

These really seem like terrible laws.

OP, I wonder if you could do something outside the will now to ensure your son gets the house. It seems that you own it.

Grt2bOutdoors
Posts: 17254
Joined: Thu Apr 05, 2007 8:20 pm
Location: New York

Re: title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Post by Grt2bOutdoors » Thu May 11, 2017 8:21 am

maria00200 wrote:well the reason why I wanted it to go to my child is because when I got the house in 2003, my mom helped me with a big chunk of the down payment, and it was her wish for the house to go to my kid when I pass. So this complicates things now. I will have to work something out and have a long talk with my husband, so it's fair for everyone. I was just more curious what the laws were when it came to pre-marital property and new spouses coming in the picture.
Is the house the only asset? Are there any marital assets - that is, assets accumulated jointly from the onset of marriage? How are those assets being divided upon death? My attorney preferred writing two wills - one for wife and one for spouse since we each owned assets prior to marriage that were never co-mmingled and remained separately titled. Assets accumulated during the marriage we left to each other and offspring, with some small bequests to nieces and nephews.
"One should invest based on their need, ability and willingness to take risk - Larry Swedroe" Asking Portfolio Questions

Grt2bOutdoors
Posts: 17254
Joined: Thu Apr 05, 2007 8:20 pm
Location: New York

Re: title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Post by Grt2bOutdoors » Thu May 11, 2017 8:24 am

mouses wrote:Not a lawyer.

Yet another reason to not get married.

I also read that getting married invalidates a will unless the will was made with the marriage in mind.

These really seem like terrible laws.
Yes, really terrible, imagine entering into a legal contract agreeing to combine and become one, only to find out later on that the other party to the contract decided arbitrarily to cut the partner to the contract out of what is at least partially due to them as a result of their effort, time (blood, sweat, tears). Terrible, indeed! :oops: The laws are in place to protect the interests of both parties, there is nothing terrible about it.
"One should invest based on their need, ability and willingness to take risk - Larry Swedroe" Asking Portfolio Questions

bsteiner
Posts: 2932
Joined: Sat Oct 20, 2012 9:39 pm
Location: NYC/NJ/FL

Re: title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Post by bsteiner » Thu May 11, 2017 8:38 am

Grt2bOutdoors wrote:... Is the house the only asset? Are there any marital assets - that is, assets accumulated jointly from the onset of marriage? How are those assets being divided upon death? My attorney preferred writing two wills - one for wife and one for spouse since we each owned assets prior to marriage that were never commingled and remained separately titled. Assets accumulated during the marriage we left to each other and offspring, with some small bequests to nieces and nephews.
The concepts of separate property and marital property are relevant upon divorce, but not upon death. In almost every state that's not a community property state, the surviving spouse has the right to claim an elective share (a specified share of the decedent's estate) in lieu of whatever provision the deceased spouse made for the surviving spouse. In New York, the elective share is 1/3. The pot includes almost all nonprobate assets. The courts have held that life insurance is not included. The treatment of qualified plans is complicated.

So, for example, in New York, if the original poster's estate is $3 million and she leaves nothing to her spouse, his elective share is $1 million, payable pro rata by the recipients of the assets. If she leaves her entire $3 million in trust for her spouse, he claims his $1 million elective share, that would be in lieu of the $3 million trust. In that case, the remaining $2 million would pass as if he did not survive her.

The simplest thing, if she has other assets, is to leave a sufficient amount of other assets to her spouse so as to satisfy his elective share.

The elective share amount, the extent to which nonprobate assets are included in the pot, and the extent to which assets passing in trust can satisfy the elective share, varies from state to state.

afan
Posts: 3014
Joined: Sun Jul 25, 2010 4:01 pm

Re: title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Post by afan » Thu May 11, 2017 2:59 pm

Does this mean that the OP could not give the house to an heir now? Could not transfer the house to an irrevocable trust that gave her the right to live their for life, but the child was the beneficiary at her death? That is, if there will be an elective share, then a married person cannot defeat that by giving away something of value beforehand?
We don't know how to beat the market on a risk-adjusted basis, and we don't know anyone that does know either | --Swedroe | We assume that markets are efficient, that prices are right | --Fama

mouses
Posts: 2452
Joined: Sat Oct 24, 2015 12:24 am

Re: title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Post by mouses » Thu May 18, 2017 4:52 pm

Grt2bOutdoors wrote:
mouses wrote:Not a lawyer.

Yet another reason to not get married.

I also read that getting married invalidates a will unless the will was made with the marriage in mind.

These really seem like terrible laws.
Yes, really terrible, imagine entering into a legal contract agreeing to combine and become one, only to find out later on that the other party to the contract decided arbitrarily to cut the partner to the contract out of what is at least partially due to them as a result of their effort, time (blood, sweat, tears). Terrible, indeed! :oops: The laws are in place to protect the interests of both parties, there is nothing terrible about it.
Marriage is marriage, it's not fusion.

Dottie57
Posts: 2386
Joined: Thu May 19, 2016 5:43 pm

Re: title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Post by Dottie57 » Thu May 18, 2017 7:33 pm

mouses wrote:
Grt2bOutdoors wrote:
mouses wrote:Not a lawyer.

Yet another reason to not get married.

I also read that getting married invalidates a will unless the will was made with the marriage in mind.

These really seem like terrible laws.
Yes, really terrible, imagine entering into a legal contract agreeing to combine and become one, only to find out later on that the other party to the contract decided arbitrarily to cut the partner to the contract out of what is at least partially due to them as a result of their effort, time (blood, sweat, tears). Terrible, indeed! :oops: The laws are in place to protect the interests of both parties, there is nothing terrible about it.
Marriage is marriage, it's not fusion.
In many cases it is. My parents were married for 63 years. They each knew what the other was thinking. It would have been terrible if they hadn't had one fnancial life.

However , marrying in later life is trickier. A prenup agreement is the best way to make finances clear for all those understand.

I think the horse is out of the gate here. Hopefully OP will sit down and talk to husband about fnances and death. Only way anything good will come of it.

User avatar
yatesd
Posts: 491
Joined: Sun Nov 03, 2013 8:19 am
Location: MD

Re: title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Post by yatesd » Thu May 18, 2017 7:57 pm

mouses wrote:
Grt2bOutdoors wrote:
mouses wrote:Not a lawyer.

Yet another reason to not get married.

I also read that getting married invalidates a will unless the will was made with the marriage in mind.

These really seem like terrible laws.
Yes, really terrible, imagine entering into a legal contract agreeing to combine and become one, only to find out later on that the other party to the contract decided arbitrarily to cut the partner to the contract out of what is at least partially due to them as a result of their effort, time (blood, sweat, tears). Terrible, indeed! :oops: The laws are in place to protect the interests of both parties, there is nothing terrible about it.
Marriage is marriage, it's not fusion.
Ironically, the laws are in place to protect a spouse...in many cases a stay at home mom that raises kids and helps support the effort but doesn't technically "own anything". That being said, if marriage is working well, both people are complementing each other by performing functions where they provide the most value...these are often hard to quantify/compare. One of the main reasons a spouse is protected.

Ideally, the surviving spouse will treat all children equally. I can't even fathom the complications of treating one child more "special" than another. :shock:

bsteiner
Posts: 2932
Joined: Sat Oct 20, 2012 9:39 pm
Location: NYC/NJ/FL

Re: title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Post by bsteiner » Thu May 18, 2017 8:33 pm

afan wrote:Does this mean that the OP could not give the house to an heir now? Could not transfer the house to an irrevocable trust that gave her the right to live their for life, but the child was the beneficiary at her death? That is, if there will be an elective share, then a married person cannot defeat that by giving away something of value beforehand?
The Legislature thought of that one. See EPTL § 5-1.1-A(b)(1)(F): http://codes.findlaw.com/ny/estates-pow ... 1-1-a.html .

afan
Posts: 3014
Joined: Sun Jul 25, 2010 4:01 pm

Re: title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Post by afan » Fri May 19, 2017 12:39 pm

Not being a lawyer, kind of tough to get through the legalese, but I assume the relevant part is "Inter vivos dispositions treated as testamentary substitutes for the purpose of election by surviving spouse."??

Seems like a tidy way to handle it. Unless the transfer took place a long time before death, in which case tracking value and who owned what when could get complicated. But I suppose that is why estates attorneys who really are experts get paid the big bucks.

sounds like the OP is stuck as far as the house is concerned if the goal was to pass on all assets to the child. If the goal would be satisfied soley with the house and there were enough other assets then OP could use those other assets to satisfy the elective share.

Could all this have been avoided with a prenup? Could one make an agreement ahead of time that all A's assets go to A's children, even if A is married to B at the time of death? Of course, if B is willing to sign before marriage, might be willing to do this afterwards.
We don't know how to beat the market on a risk-adjusted basis, and we don't know anyone that does know either | --Swedroe | We assume that markets are efficient, that prices are right | --Fama

bsteiner
Posts: 2932
Joined: Sat Oct 20, 2012 9:39 pm
Location: NYC/NJ/FL

Re: title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Post by bsteiner » Fri May 19, 2017 12:48 pm

afan wrote:... Could one make an agreement ahead of time that all A's assets go to A's children, even if A is married to B at the time of death? Of course, if B is willing to sign before marriage, might be willing to do this afterwards.
Prenuptial agreements are generally enforceable (though I had an estate where the surviving spouse successfully challenged a prenuptial agreement and the case was settled on appeal).

Postnuptial agreements are possible, but the requirements for a valid postnuptial agreement are greater.

If she has enough other assets to satisfy his elective share, that ends the matter. If her other assets come close to satisfying his elective share, he might not claim it. The situation is more difficult if she has little else besides the home.

As previously noted, she may wish to consult with competent trusts and estates counsel, who can ascertain the facts and give her more specific advice.

gr7070
Posts: 172
Joined: Fri Oct 28, 2011 10:39 am

Re: title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Post by gr7070 » Fri May 19, 2017 1:19 pm

maria00200 wrote:well the reason why I wanted it to go to my child is because when I got the house in 2003, my mom helped me with a big chunk of the down payment, and it was her wish for the house to go to my kid when I pass.
Is that truly the reason? Seems like an awful reason. Not sure I'm buying it to be honest.

Assuming that is the only reason and there's not issues between you or he and some of the kids...
If your mom is dead move on. There's zero reason to be tied to some distant request by your mom that doesn't matter today. Especially so since you weren't married when she requested it. Circumstances have greatly changed since.

Additionally, it sure sounds like you didn't own this house free and clear when you got married. Thus he's been paying on and maintaining it for some time. It's morally not yours alone to give, and likely not legally either.

afan
Posts: 3014
Joined: Sun Jul 25, 2010 4:01 pm

Re: title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Post by afan » Fri May 19, 2017 4:21 pm

I have no legal expertise and bsteiner says the broad issues have been covered and the OP needs to go over the details with an attorney.

But I have to say that I take honoring the promise to a deceased parent very seriously. I could imagine situations where that is not possible. But the whole nature of a promise is that you will do that thing, even if it is inconvenient. If the OP accepted the parent's help with a promise to pass the house on to the grandchild, I would try to honor that.

We don't know enough to have opinions about equity, whether the husband has been supporting the family, helping to pay for.the house or otherwise making contributions. We don't know how much other money the OP or husband may have. But we do know that the grandparent wanted her house to go to her grandchild.
We don't know how to beat the market on a risk-adjusted basis, and we don't know anyone that does know either | --Swedroe | We assume that markets are efficient, that prices are right | --Fama

gr7070
Posts: 172
Joined: Fri Oct 28, 2011 10:39 am

Re: title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Post by gr7070 » Fri May 19, 2017 5:13 pm

afan wrote:But I have to say that I take honoring the promise to a deceased parent very seriously. I could imagine situations where that is not possible. But the whole nature of a promise is that you will do that thing, even if it is inconvenient. If the OP accepted the parent's help with a promise to pass the house on to the grandchild, I would try to honor that.

We don't know enough to have opinions about equity, whether the husband has been supporting the family, helping to pay for.the house or otherwise making contributions. We don't know how much other money the OP or husband may have. But we do know that the grandparent wanted her house to go to her grandchild.
The last thing a good parent should do is burden their child with conditions and expectations when they're long gone. The only thing we owe our parents is to live/act well. It's the only appropriate expectation in death a parent should have, as well.

Unless the grandparent paid for the whole thing they can't morally obligate passing the whole thing on either. We know that the grandparent only helped with a percentage of the down payment. That alone is enough to know that the grandparent can't reasonably obligate the entire house.

This is an easy moral decision; one their grandparent hopefully would recognize and agree with. Even if they don't, one would not be bound by an inappropriate or, what might be, an illegal obligation.

Dottie57
Posts: 2386
Joined: Thu May 19, 2016 5:43 pm

Re: title of my home in my name but I'm remarried

Post by Dottie57 » Fri May 19, 2017 5:51 pm

I agree with afan. A promise should be kept if possible.

Post Reply