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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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  #21  
Old 07-13-2012, 11:11 PM
wondergirl wondergirl is offline
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I just figured this forum thread was more appropriate because it was indeed a common law issue. Is that not the case?
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Old 07-13-2012, 11:16 PM
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ohhh, and I am from Ontario. not BC
  #23  
Old 07-13-2012, 11:58 PM
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sorry - age thing LOL. Keep us informed as to how things turn out for you. All the best.
  #24  
Old 07-14-2012, 06:16 AM
standing on the sidelines standing on the sidelines is offline
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so he paid for the house and you contributed by looking after the place?? He did put you as joint tenant? I am not sure you would be totally entitled to 50/50 split.

Your best bet is to first figure out how much the property went up from the time your name went on title until now. I may be mistaken but you do not get the value from the time he bought it until the time your name went on it as you were common-law.

Once you have that figure then you can negotiate with him.
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Old 07-14-2012, 08:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wondergirl View Post
Re this:

[/B]

that's basically why I am asking...

quoted from here: Property Division - Common Law Relationship
I am not sure that they are specifically talking about a home. Property in this context means things like furniture, tvs, cars etc. If you also read further it says there is not simple formula for dividing property when its common law.
  #26  
Old 07-14-2012, 09:43 AM
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Wondergirl,

You are in the correct forum, your questions are about common law. If Threads are in the wrong place the mods can move them.

Please use this thread to ask any questions related to your situation that you please.

Your situation regarding spousal support and the situation regarding the property are separate issues with separate resolutions.

With spousal support, you repeat often that he wanted you to not work. This does not take away your own responsibility here, you chose that lifestyle. You could have said no, you could have found a different relationship, etc. This is not an issue to focus on or waste any energy on, it is just a distraction from your actual issues. You could sit in your lawyer's office and chat about it for an hour, and it wouldn't get you any closer to settling your case, you would just be paying your lawyer to listen.

The issue in court will be, are you capable of working? What job are you capable of working at? What career did you have prior to entering the relationship? The court will look at your employability and at the average wage in jobs that you are capable of.

It does not look good on you if you claim that your income is $0 and will remain $0 forever. We all have responsibility to support ourselves. Your ex's lawyer will argue that you should be imputed at least a minimum wage for the purposes of calculating support. Whether or not you work, any support would be calculated as though you were earning that much income.

If you enter $0 into support calculators it will give you a misleading answer.

Regarding the property, you have a very complicated situation. I will try to break it down to show the issues that will need to be addressed.
  • The property was jointly held. Any increase in value of the property should be split 50/50. If it was bought for $200k and would sell for $300k, then the increase in value is $100k. The amount to split because of the joint ownership would be $100k.
  • Your ex paid for the purchase of the property in it's entirety. This has to count for something. Using the same numbers, if he paid $200k then that money would be his.
  • You worked and maintained the farm. This has to count for something. According to recent appeal court rulings on resulting trusts, in Ontario, a judge would estimate the value of the work you did and assign you an additional claim on the value of the farm of that amount.
  • This has to be balanced against the fact that you were supported during that time, you were housed, fed, transported, clothed, etc.
The calculations are not simple, you will argue your side as best you can, he will argue his side as best he can. The longer you involve lawyers and the higher the court costs, the less money there will be to split.

You certainly have a substantial claim. If you are able to negotiate and come to a fair settlement this will be in the best interests for both of you.

To give you an example, my own parents owned a small farm and my father had considerable construction equipement. They were never able to settle, they spent all their life savings on lawyers, the farm and equipment were eventually auctioned off at a fraction of their value.
  #27  
Old 07-14-2012, 09:54 AM
standing on the sidelines standing on the sidelines is offline
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the home seems to be quite confusing, first in his name only, transferred it to her name to hide it from ex and finally after a bit added his name back onto it as joint.

Can the OP give a timeline on when all that happened?? Not sure if it will matter but always good to have all the info.
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Old 07-14-2012, 10:01 AM
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The transfer of titles is odd, but since the current situation is joint ownership, and there was obvious intent that after 10 years the ownership should be joint, then as long as he isn't going to try to claim sole ownership it shouldn't really matter. The current situation is joint.

Because he paid the full mortgage he will argue unjust enrichment if she askes for a 50/50 split. However...

She maintained the property and worked the farm, so she will argue a resulting trust.

IMHO (and keep in mind, wondergirl, I am not a lawyer) the unjust enrichment and the resulting trust should cancel each other out, and the simplest way to save $50,000 on lawyers would be split the property 50/50, even if it doesn't work out to the penny. However that requires that both parties want to save legal costs and get it over with.
  #29  
Old 07-14-2012, 10:02 AM
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Re: Standing on the sidelines.

The home was purchased 10 yrs ago, put in his name...when he realized that he did not want his ex wife to have any knowledge of this purchase, about a few months later he put the home solely in my name (deed/mortgage). Once he was released from support payments to his son by way of a lump sum payment he then approached me to put the home in both our names (joint tenant in this case). This was approx. one or two years after it was in my name solely.

Also realize as i had stated previously, We were already 10 yrs into the relationship. So this home was purchased halfway into a 20 yr common law partnership.

Hope that helps.
  #30  
Old 07-14-2012, 10:08 AM
standing on the sidelines standing on the sidelines is offline
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how much equity are we talking about here??? You need the numbers in order to see if its worth the fight. He should be entitled to his downpayment back before any equity is split IMHO.
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