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Lucy, Esq.
Lucy, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 28062
Experience:  Attorney with experience in family law.
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You answered my previous question about my ex-wife failing

Customer Question

You answered my previous question about my ex-wife failing to execute quit claim deed on our house which the judge awarded to me. Since then, I've tried to access my payment files from my lawyer. Here father, Warren Scoville killed himself back in May.
Please see attached email. To summarize, the Honorable Bill Meade (my ex-wife's lawyer) is now in charge of his estate and my files. I don't see how he can continue to represent my ex-wife and be in possession of my files. Here's my question: I've attached
the quit claim document the Honorable Bill Meade prepared. I'm concerned about fair market value. Meade is using the purchase price from 2001 ($146,500). Does it have to be current fair market value? The judge decided, and Meade and my ex wife agreed, that
the price was about $155,000. That's what the county assesses tax from. After that paragraph, he places a disclaimer saying "it's a class D felony for knowingly providing false info." Then he adds another disclaimer saying "this was prepared without benefit
of an appraisal or title search." I don't trust either Bill Meade or my ex-wife Lori Rosencrance. Is this quit claim valid? Should I sign? If so, I'm in Korea working for the US Air Force. Do I have it notarized here and then send to the Laurel County Clerk
for filing?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Hi,

I'm Lucy, and I'd be happy to answer your questions today. I'm sorry to hear about your situation.

A judge is prohibited from practicing law while he is on the bench, even for clients he helped before becoming a judge, so he should not be preparing anything. It's a violation of the Code of Judicial Conduct.

With that said, if you sign the quitclaim deed, it is valid. A person should never, ever, ever sign something they do not agree with. In a divorce, property is evaluated based on current market value, not based on what the parties paid or the tax assessment. Tax assessments are almost always lower than what a house is worth, because the city doesn't want to spend a lot of time and money valuing everyone's upgrades to their home. They're basically assuming all houses are in bad condition when valuing them for tax purposes (more accurately, they're saying, "The house is worth at least this much...").

It is possible to sign the agreement and have it notarized while in the Air Force, but again, that is something you'd only do if you agree with it. You're allowed to ask that they redo it, using the correct fair market value of the property.

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