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P. Simmons
P. Simmons, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 33479
Experience:  16 yrs. of trial experience
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Married yrs. my husband left and filed. our home is has been

Customer Question

married for 30 yrs. my husband left and filed for divorce. our home is has been paid for for about 5 yrs. he left 3 mo ago. his attorney said that he will be asking for rent using watts law. I did own the home for 3 yrs before we got married,we then refinanced and put the home in both of our names. do you think that I will have to pay rent according to this law. the divorce will probably take at least 3 to 4 more months.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  P. Simmons replied 1 year ago.

My name is***** have over 16 years experience in the law. Should you like to chat on the phone I am happy to for a nominal cost. Let me know at any time during our question and answer session if you are interested I am happy to give you more details.

I am sorry for this dilemma.
What you are describing? Since you refinanced the property, the court will consider the property as "marital property" or, in CA, community property. He has an equal right to the home as you
If you are living in the home, he can ask the court to order you pay "rent" for the duration of the marriage. This is something the court would likely approve (since the home belongs to both of you but presently you are the only one benefitting from it)

This is the part of my job I don't like...when the law is not in favor of my customer. I wish I could tell you that the court will not order you to pay rent but I can only provide you information based on the law so that you can act on the best available information to you...I wish I had better news, but can only hope you recognize and understand my predicament and don't shoot the messenger. I'm sorry!
Please let me know if you have more questions. I am happy to help if I can. Otherwise, please rate the answer so I may get credit for my work.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I know that is the law but you did not address the issue of me owning the home for 3 yrs prior to the marriage
Expert:  P. Simmons replied 1 year ago.

Sorry for the confusion. I thought I was clear when I indicated the "refi" would cause the court to view this as community property.

You did a refi on the home..and paid the mortgage off from income earned during the marriage. So the home is now community property.

Again, sorry for the confusion and sorry to bear bad news.

Please let me know if you have more questions. I am happy to help if I can. Otherwise, please rate the answer so I may get credit for my work.

Expert:  P. Simmons replied 1 year ago.

Follow up, I note you had the chance to review the answer.

Please let me know if you have further questions; if so I will do my best to answer them. If not please hit the accept button, its the only way I get credit for my work.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
i cancelled my free trial. only had the one questions. you didn't respond about the time I owned the home before the marriage.
Expert:  P. Simmons replied 1 year ago.

Again, I am sorry for the confusion. I did answer the question. You asked about the time prior to your marriage...and I responded that the refi you did effectively erased your prior ownership interest.