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Marsha411JD, Attorney
Category: Legal
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Experience:  Licensed Atty, 29 yrs exp in the practice of law.
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My husband divorced his ex over four years ago. He gave her

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My husband divorced his ex over four years ago. He gave her $30,000 for her equity in the house, and she signed a quitclaim deed giving him possession of the home. It was never stipulated in the divorce that he refinance. Now, she's trying to buy a second home and is threatening to take him to court if he doesn't refinance. However, we are in the process of selling the house, and don't want to refinance it. Can he legally be made to refinance at this point? He has never been late on any payment.

Thank you for the information and your question. Although your husband's ex-wife could file a petition in court to force your husband to refinance the property based on the fact that she gave him the quit claim deed and he gave her some money for equity, which indicates an intention that he refinance, the fact is that by the time the court would even make such a decision, you may have the house sold. The sad fact for her is that this should have been specifically included in the divorce decree to make it clear and then when he didn't refinance, four years ago, she should have taken it to court then.

Now she is under the gun because she didn't act and wants an immediate resolution. The courts just don't move that fast. So, again, she can file a petition, but assuming you can get the house sold in the next few months, the court wouldn't act before then. Also, if he does go to court and can show the court that he is actively trying to sell the house, the court won't order the refinance.

Please let me know if you need any clarification. I would be glad to assist you further if I can.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Since it wasn't stipulated in the divorce agreement that he refinance. If the court were to order him to refinance, could she be held liable for half of the refinance fees?

No, since she quit claimed the property to him and he paid her the equity, the court would typically find that the refinance was on him. Hopefully though, it won't come to that.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

What if he doesn't qualify to refinance? What would the court do then?

Then they might order a forced sale (it is called partition.) But since you say you are selling it anyway, then that would match his plans.
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