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TJ, Esq.
TJ, Esq., Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 12180
Experience:  JD, MBA
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My ex-husband was ordered in the divorce decree to pay the

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My ex-husband was ordered in the divorce decree to pay the mortgage on my home. I am on the title to the house (as is he), but only he is on the mortgage. He has stopped paying the mortgage, and now I have received some information in the mail (addressed to home owner/occupant) that says the house is to go on auction, due to foreclosure, on March 18. Today is February 28. I am not interested in trying to take over the payments (cannot afford them), but I would like to know whether or not I must have a lawyer to ask the court where our divorce was granted to hold him in contempt of the divorce decree. Or is it possible for me to file such a motion without hiring a lawyer? I really do not have the money for a lawyer. Additionally, I am wondering if the judge in such cases usually awards half of the house's value to someone in my predicament. Thanks!
Hello and thank you for allowing me the opportunity to assist you.

Q: I would like to know whether or not I must have a lawyer to ask the court where our divorce was granted to hold him in contempt of the divorce decree. Or is it possible for me to file such a motion without hiring a lawyer? I really do not have the money for a lawyer.
A: You may indeed represent yourself and file a motion requesting that your ex be held in contempt of court for failing to abide by the divorce decree. Having said that, I recommend hiring an attorney if at all possible.

Q: Additionally, I am wondering if the judge in such cases usually awards half of the house's value to someone in my predicament.
A: The judge would likely award you an amount equal to what your ex was supposed to pay in mortgage payments. It may or may not be tied to the value of the house, since the amount that your husband was supposed to pay on the mortgage may not have had anything to do with the value of the house. For example, if the order merely stated that your ex pay for 3 years, then that would be less than half the value of the house. Or, even if your ex was ordered to pay for the mortgage until the house was paid off, that would be less than half the value of the house if the mortgage itself was worth less than half the value of the house. But you should be awarded something the make up for the lost house. I'm just not sure how the judge intends to calculate the damages.

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Thank you and good luck!
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