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Ely, Counselor at Law
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 101572
Experience:  Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
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I live in Indiana, and I am going through a divorce in which

Customer Question

I live in Indiana, and I am going through a divorce in which I must divide the appraised value of my house with my ex-wife. However, I lived this house and paid the mortgage on it 5 years before we were married. My CPA told me that I can first deduct that 5 years from the appraised value of my house. Is that true? And if so how can I prove it to the court?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Ely replied 1 year ago.
Hello and welcome to JustAnswer. Please note:
(A) This is general information and is not legal advice. No specific course of action is proposed herein. No attorney-client relationship or privilege is formed by speaking to an expert on this site. This is repeated in numerous disclaimers throughout the site. By continuing, you confirm that you understand and agree to these terms; and (B) there may be a slight delay between your follow ups and my reply while I am typing out my answer.
I am sorry to hear about this situation. Has the court approved of such a deduction, or not? Or the Court has not even been approached with this?
This is not an answer, but an Information Request. I need this information to answer your question. Please reply, so I can answer your question. Thank you in advance.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
The court has not even been approached with this
Expert:  Ely replied 1 year ago.
Thank you.
First of all, understand that there is no "automatic" right. This has to be asked of from the Court.
What you are describing is called spousal contribution community property. In certain cases, at the court's discretion, the Court may agree to credit a spouse for spousal contribution community property.
However, this is not a right, and is at the Judge's discretion. To get this before the Court for consideration, the Court has to be approached about this via motion.
In addition, this is generally limited to when the property is actually a SEPARATE property. For example, A owed HOUSE worth $30 before marriage. A and B married, and B put in $20 in renovations. HOUSE is worth $50 now. A and B divorce, and A gets HOUSE back worth $50. In that case, B may be credited with $20 for their contribution to increase the value of A's separate property.
Similar doctrine exists for community property, but in a much more restricted format and at the court's discretion.
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