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Common Law Issues The law regarding common law relationships is different than in cases of divorce. Discuss the issues that affect unmarried couples here.

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Old 07-08-2006, 12:32 AM
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Default Will someone give me honest advice?

I need to negotiate a common law separation agreement with a person who has no intent to settle. He is at the "I don't care if I lose every penny I have" stage. We have been together for seven years and have a 3 yr old together. I also brought into the relationship a child from my first marriage (married young and silly, I never learn)The first few years were good, I had been renting my own place, then My child and I intially moved into his home for a few months, then decided to move into town. He sold his home and purchased a house in town.He put 20,000 down on the house when he bought it. When my child and I moved in, he added my name to the title of the house, to protect me from his ex and 2 children,who he paid 500/month child support to. He said that if he died, he wanted to ensure I wouldn't lose the house. 3 years later, he tells me that my name wasn't on the mortgage, so even though I had been already contributing financially ( about 2/3 what he contributed, I agreed that I should be responsible for the loan as well. He talked to the bank and called me to go to the bank and sign. After the papers had been signed, we get a mortgage paper in the mail and the amount of the mortgage has substantially increased (25,000) When I questioned him, he said money was tight and we were both in school. Then I found out he had refinanced the mortgage before I signed and paid off his personal line of credit. Anyhoo, for 3 years he was 3 hrs away at school - 1 year full time and 2 years parttime, financed by WSIB.He could have gone to school where we live, I found out later, instead he opted to move 3 hours away. In those 3 years, I was on maternity leave for one year, and full time school and parenting both kidsfor 2 years,did his laundry, doing all the housework, precooking his meals to take with him, basically single mommin it. He came home weekly at first, then it switched to bi weekly weekend visits.By theat time he was in school part time only, but was always too busy to come home on the weekends. He had withdrawn 10,000 of his RRSP's under the lifelong learning plan to help with my schooling, he said WSIB was paying for his school and this was a great chance for us to get ahead. I have always worked but wanted to reeducate and find a better paying job. I've never had a visa because I'm scared of debt, so he always used his and in exchange I put everything I ever earned in into our joint account. I don't have receipts for stuff and he knows I don't because money and credit cards terrify me. The most I use is a debit card. After school, I got a job right away and put all of the money into joint. We decided to buy some lake property and refinanced the mortgage. He had trouble making the arrangements and later he said that he took about 6,000 from his selectline to get the property, as well as refinancing the mortgage to 70,000. When I started waking up and uncovering some things he hadn't been telling me, we attempted to split accounts and pay all mutual bills out of one joint account. He became angry because after I paid my half, I still had funds left over and he didn't because he's never had to worry about money and doesn;t know how to budget.He moved out. As it stands now, he says I can keep the house if I take over the mortgage payments and sign over the lake property to him free and clear, or he wants to go to trial. I can' t afford to drag this out. Does anyone think this is unfair or am I losing it? He no longer pays the bills, he moved out and cut off the phone(which I had to have reconnected, then he cut off the net, then he cut off thet.v.. Last weekend he showed up and said he wanted to reconcile. I told him if he sought counselling I would consider that an effort and I would go also. Then he said I was nuts and I need my head looked at and he doesn't need counselling and I am A B----. I have a lawyer and she doesn't have all his details, says he could claim unjust enrichement but it probably wouldn't fly. I offerred to take the whole debt and the house and property and he could just walk away, but he says no, that I owe him money. I have always put every penny I had into the joint account, but he has visa receipts for stuff I paid for too and he claims he paid for everything on his own. I am going on and on but I can't sleep and I'm at my wits end and I just want to be fair and walk away? Can someone knowledgable give me a reality check and what info is lacking to gain a clear understanding of my situation?
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Old 07-08-2006, 06:53 AM
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worried Mom,

that is quite a predicament your in but keep in mind that your home is jointly owned. It is a financial obligation to your ex also. If your unable to keep the obligation on your own, it will also effect your ex's financial situation and credit rating. Perhaps he will care then. Make him aware.

It appears that he is attempting to make things most difficult for you. To determine a fair equalization the home should be appraised. The secondary property should be appraised also. To me your ex was enriched by purchasing the lake property as it was acquired during the time of the relationship. As you mentioned he rolled his debt in the current mortgage on the home.


The first thing you have to do is isolate the issues.

Custody

Access

Child support

Child Support for your first children - Did he act as a parent to your first children, if so you may be entitled to claim a tabled child support.

Spousal Support for yourself - If you have need and your ex's has means with first consideration given to support of the children.

lv
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Old 07-09-2006, 10:13 PM
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Question thanks for your response

thank you for your response. Child custody will not be an issue to dispute as he has relocated and my lawyer believes that because I have always been, and continue to be the primary caregiver to the children, he will be satisfied with access. Child support--he is currently making around $40,000/year, but is paying me $182.00/mth, because wsib benefits are non taxable, he says its not income and he said he is not basing the support on that, but rather with his current employment. Can a person recalculate their support every month? This seems to be his intention. My intention was to go thru FRO to avoid problems,so I'm not sure where he gets his numbers from. My lawyer feels I am entitled to support for both children, but I am struggling with that ethically. He has been her daddy for seven years but I receive support from FRO for her from her bio dad. What is the right thing to do? He talked to me this weekend and offerred to let me take the remaining mortgage of 68000, and keep the house and property and pay him 18,000-half of the purchase price of the property. At first it sounded good, then I thought about him paying off his selectine with the mortgage that time, and I'll be paying that mortgage for awhile.Then I considered the 10,000 he withdrew to help me with school. So should I insted offer him to take the house and property for 68,000 and give him a buy out of 10,000 ?Does that sound reasonable? Or should I get an appraiser to value the house & property and get numbers from that? I hate math!! Agh! I just want to be done!
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Old 07-09-2006, 10:51 PM
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worried Mom,

Quote:
Child support--he is currently making around $40,000/year, but is paying me $182.00/mth, because wsib benefits are non taxable, he says its not income and he said he is not basing the support on that, but rather with his current employment. Can a person recalculate their support every month?
WSIB benefit he receives is treated as income for child support purposes. The court could input an income to him to account for this tax free income. You would have to bring an order to input an income to him if he contested including the WSIB amount as income. Moreover, since the WSIB income is tax free status, the court's could input more income than he receives from the WSIB as the child support guidelines factor in payable taxes.

If your ex is recalculating the payable support every month, I would recommend that you get a child support order in place and have the payment go through the FRO.


If he acted as a father and parent to your other child, and if the court determines same, you could receive a payable child support amount for this child also.

Before you do any equalization, I would have the properties appraised.

lv
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Old 07-10-2006, 09:55 AM
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Default sounds like a good idea

Thanks for your feedback, sometimes emotions get in my way because I don't want to look like a goldgigger, but I don't want the children to suffer in the future because of my indecisions/bad decisions. I will contact a certified appraiser and see what the house and the lake property are worth, before agreeing to anything. I just have to figure out where I'm going to pull another few hundred dollars to pay for the appraisal--Agh!! Money again! He seems in an awful hurry for me to do the deal, I want this over too, but..I will have it appraised.As for the child support, I'm glad to know the FRO can come into play, because it is hard to live month to month not knowing how much he'll contribute to the children.Good to know that WSIB is calculated, he insisted that it doesn't and but I know better! Thanks a bunch for your input, I appreciate it.
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Old 07-15-2006, 11:30 PM
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Default another setback

He went to see his lawyer and has informed me that his lawyer will be going to court to have an order to sell the house and lake property, because I will not agree to any of his ridiculous terms. ie. keep on as is with all in our names, and he will pay half the mortgage until the lake property sells. Then I will owe him money for his half of the house or some such rot.Take the house for 68000 and sign over the lake property to him. 2 mills have closed their doors and 2 more are scheduled to close in October, I want to settle this and be done! He says the only way he will stop is if I take the house for the full$68,000, which would leave the lake property paid for and he wants it. This is nuts! I haven't heard from my lawyer but I did contact an appraiser who could provide that service, however, she told me it will cost 3oo dollars. I said okay. Then she told me that he could fight it and I might have to get a second opinion, even though she is a certified appraiser. I tried to reason with him, even offerred I'd take the house for 50000 and he could have the property for 20000, which is 16000 less than we paid for it. His latest is he'll take the house and property (which the children and I still live in) and he;ll take the remaining debt and we will have to leave! What I want to know is, when the court orders for houses/properties to be sold, how do they set the acceptable price? Does a judge say, sell everything asap to pay what debt is left? or based on appraisal advice? Should I get the appraiser in or am I wasting my time and money?? Just from our brief conversation, the appraiser figures the house and property will probably be worth what is left owing on the mortgage, due to the harse economic times our community is going thru. Homeowners are packing up and moving and handing keys back to banks. If the properties are ordered sold and the word gets outs in our town, people may offer WAY less and we still may end up with mutual debt.I would be more than willing to take both assests for remaining debt also, but he won't go for that either. He will not rest until we are homeless. My girls will be confused and very sad if I have to take them and move into an apartment. My standard of living aside, these children will have a drastically reduced standard of living (most apartments in this town are low income rentals, basically slums.)Isn't there a reasonable way I, or my lawyer could ask a judge to let me keep my house for the children? If his lawyer goes ahead with his plot, can my lawyer step in and say, "hey no need, she'll take the remaining assests, which are drastically worth less than before and take the remaining debt" I would do it and I want to stop playing these mind games with him. He is being nasty and hurtful and I worried that he will have everything taken from us. I was all "gung ho" to get the appraisal done, but the appraiser said he should agree to it in writing first, but he will not. I just don;t know what to do.
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Old 07-16-2006, 09:15 AM
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worriedmom,

Quote:
He went to see his lawyer and has informed me that his lawyer will be going to court to have an order to sell the house and lake property, because I will not agree to any of his ridiculous terms. ie. keep on as is with all in our names, and he will pay half the mortgage until the lake property sells.
Have the properties professionally appraised. These appraisals are accurate. If your estranged spouse is not happy with the appraisal then have him pay for a second independent appraisal.

As an example, even if there were two professional appraisal reports in hand, the court would most likely take an average value of the two. It doesn't make sense to spend thousands to litigate over a thousand. Moreover it will back up your stance and also show how frivolous and unjust his offers to settle are.

If they do file a motion to sell with the courts, then you could say something to the court it is consented in principle but you want an accurate professionally appraised value. This position would not be seen as unreasonable to the courts. You could even at this point present your plan ie to keep the home buy him out etc.


If they continue to play games in regards to the WSIB income he receives, you will have to file a motion with the court and have this income inputted to him. Has he served a sworn financial statement to you yet? You should have a child support order in place to enforce the matter.

Quote:
He will not rest until we are homeless. My girls will be confused and very sad if I have to take them and move into an apartment. My standard of living aside, these children will have a drastically reduced standard of living (most apartments in this town are low income rentals, basically slums.)Isn't there a reasonable way I, or my lawyer could ask a judge to let me keep my house for the children? If his lawyer goes ahead with his plot, can my lawyer step in and say, "hey no need, she'll take the remaining assests, which are drastically worth less than before and take the remaining debt" I would do it and I want to stop playing these mind games with him. He is being nasty and hurtful and I worried that he will have everything taken from us. I was all "gung ho" to get the appraisal done, but the appraiser said he should agree to it in writing first, but he will not. I just don;t know what to do.
You could bring forth an order for exclusive possession of the matrimonial home until equalization is settled. This is usually granted and is based to the best interest of the children. Children need stability in their lives and your plan appears to very stable and child centered.

lv
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Old 07-21-2006, 08:46 PM
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Default appraisal done

Well, I had the professional appraisal done. Now I am waiting for financing from the bank to proceed with a fair equalization offer. Can I run this by you?
As I thought, property values are down due to economic tough times.

House- appraised at 55,000
Property-appraised at 30,000

We currently owe 68,000

so I'm thinking (and I am not a math whiz)
The house and property's appraised value is 85,000 minus-68,000 we still owe, leaving a balance of 17,000. Divide that by 2 and I should assume the mortgage for 68,000 and pay him out 8,500. I would take ownership of the house and property. Does this sound reasonable? Can I decrease the pay out if I factor in the lawyers fees (approx.1000,) price of the appraisal (300,) or is that really pushing the envelope? If a court ordered a sale of everything, I'm assuming we'd both have to share equally the cost of the legal fees. As well, due to the tough economic outlook, houses aren't selling. I had one rude woman walk up to me on the street and inform me that she would buy the lakefront property for 20,000 if I was desperate. I was so angry! Our dream was to fix the house, sell it and build at the lake someday. I still want to realize that dream with my children. We need peace in our lives, they need HAPPINESS. And on the child support note, He's informed me that I will be getting a letter from his lawyer letting me know that he'll no longer be contributing one red cent, until I give him whatever he wants for the property issues. So I am really hoping to hear from the bank by early next week,and send all the appraisal and bank info to my lawyer, with a request for settling the issue , as well request his financial info so she can arrange support (She's already requested this from his lawyer--no response ) I have not called her yet to let her know what I've done becasue I know everytime I pick up the phone, It's costing me money that I don't have, so I am trying to do some of the leg work myself.
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Old 07-21-2006, 10:28 PM
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I suppose one way to look at it is.. if he offered to buy you out for same amout would you feel this is a fair deal. If so then I think you can feel confident this is a fair arrangement.

In reality the expenses to evaluate the house should be divided 50/50. But I doubt you will get him to agree. At least you have a professional appraisal. This is important for equalization. If he does not agree he may get his own. (and pay for it).

Lawyers/legal fees to transfer house will most likely be yours alone if you end up transferring house to your name or his if you sell to him.
I understand you feel that a lower appraisal is in your favour at this point but it may be possible for him touse this against you by offering to buy you out rather than other way around, just a thought....be careful.

Child support is a completely seperate issue he has no legal right to deny paying support for his children, he may not use eqaulization as an excuse to avoid his obligation. Of course until you have your gov. (FRO) deduct his obligation he may try to avoid.
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Old 07-22-2006, 09:43 PM
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worried mom,

Get the other parties name off the deed and title to the properties.

If it is feasible, assume the existing mortgage or obtain a new mortgage.

Its makes economic sense. A twenty-five mortgage on 68K; payments would be really low compared to rent elsewhere. Overtime you will develop equity in the properties.

Your children will continue the status quo home life that they have come to know and very little disruption in their lives.


lv
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