Real Estate Law
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If the attorney that handled the closing in Tennessee had a set contract to follow that specifically stated that the funds were to be paid into a specific account this would be a grey area. You and your wife equally have the same right to the funds and I'm sure you know that the joint account that you and your wife share in which the funds of the sale were supposed to be placed, is accessible to both you and your wife. The joint account balance can by fully withdrawn by either spouse. So technically your wife could have withdrawn the whole $80,000 then and now and placed that amount in a separate account. I'm not sure that there is a lawsuit here as you and your wife have equal right to the funds and to account. There are really not any damages as your wife could have withdrawn the money anyway. There might be a breach of fiduciary duty on the part of the attorney and a possible legal malpractice suit but this would be very difficult to win as again, you will have a hard time proving damages as your wife had access and could have withdrawn the money anyway. Again this is assuming that there is a specific contractual agreement to place the money in that joint account.
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