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Divorce & Family Law This forum is for discussing any of the legal issues involved in your divorce.

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  #1  
Old 01-31-2021, 03:39 PM
TimmyC TimmyC is offline
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Default Court Order to Move Out of Matrimonial Home and Sale

I recently went to a court hearing as my separated wife of over 2 years wanted the matrimonial home sold. Her lawyer requested I must move out within 30 Days and then all the responsibility of the home for listing, selling etc. will solely be my wife's responsibility. The Zoom call court judge granted her all her lawyer requested except to give me 45 days to vacate the property.
A little history -
- Married 25 years and 2 boys now live on their own.
- Wife didn't wanted to be married any longer and wanted to live on her own
- She understood at the time I didn't want to sell the house but at some
point I would have to buy her out or possibly sell the house
- She had an independent appraisal, that I thought was low, but she said if I
paid all the bills for the home she would maintain that value
- Her situation changed whatever it was and wanted a collaborated
divorce/separation process with lawyers that specialize
- I kind of ignored the request as it didn't make sense to me and I suggested
a Separation Agreement.
- Early 2020 I sent a low offer to purchase and a Separation Draft Agreement
- I didn't get a response until mid June from her new lawyer for a motion to
move out in 30 days, financial records, affidavit etc.
- I delayed things again with her new lawyer as 1) I work a lot and have my
own business 2) Covid just made everything in my construction business
more complicated 3) It was upsetting the tone the new lawyer was taking
- We went to a Case Conference end of September and Judge agreed I would
have to buy her out or sell the home and the Judge stated a return date for
a decision by the court
- Another Judge after receiving all the Affidavits etc. said there should be a
court hearing
- My wife's lawyer wanted it immediately but I took advantage of the Covid
scheduling and I said I was available end of January 2021
- A different Judge at the hearing seemed bias on people that represent
themselves. Before I even had my 15 minutes to present materials she
was asking my wife and lawyer questions as if she already made her
decision 1) Do you have a real estate agent chosen? 2) Do you have a real
estate person that can hold the proceeds in trust etc. I am thinking what
about me?
Anyway, my question after all this is it standard practice for a Judge to make a court order for me to move out of the house for no reason except that I possibility delayed things for a few months with no place to live. My wife's lawyer repeatedly said I was uncooperative and you never know what he has done inside the house.
So, now I have to find temporary residence and keep paying matrimonial home bills although my wife transferred the home tax bill to her account recently. My wife has 15 days after I move out to do whatever and she has to list the house for sale after that time. I will have to wait for my share of the home sale. This doesn't make sense at all to have the house empty unless the real estate agent is going to arrange staging. House prices have increased dramatically and of course she is not honouring her appraised value from 2 yeas ago.
I was thinking to work with a lawyer to appeal this court order as I have 15 days but I am not sure of the success rate or if I delay things again is it worth the effort.
I would appreciate any input.
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  #2  
Old 01-31-2021, 06:47 PM
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Tayken Tayken is offline
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All standard fair and nothing out of the ordinary.

1. You should have made a reasonable market offer to purchase the home if you had the capital to purchase it.

2. 45 days is standard as there are no children residing in the home. It would have been longer if a "child of the marriage" was residing in the house.

3. If you had a lawyer the lawyer would have told you all this and to just sell the house and buy a new one if you didn't have the capital.

4. If you have the capital to buy the house they can't refuse a reasonable offer from you on the house when it is listed on the public market. Some people move their stuff out into a storage unit and then buy the house and then move their stuff right back in the day after closing.

5. They want you to vacate the house prior to sale for multiple reasons:

a. So you don't screw up the sale.
b. So you don't refuse to leave the property on the closing date.
c. etc...

Every clever game has been played when it comes to houses and sales. Your delay tactic was clear as glass and done 983279487324 times in court. It wasn't clever nor was it even well executed. Judges see your situation every day and ever angle.

Suffice to say just take Bill Marh's advice to Donald Trump and Pack your Shit and Go.

Yes, it sounds harsh. But, that is the reality of it. You will get 50% of the equity of the home. Use that to buy another one... In a location of your choosing and a size of your choosing.

Good Luck!
Tayken
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Old 02-01-2021, 08:13 AM
TimmyC TimmyC is offline
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Well Tayken Thanks for the straight forward reply.
Just because I represented myself doesn't mean I didn't talk to lawyers. They told me I would either have to sell or buy her out. I wasn't told I wouldn't be the one responsible for listing, selling and moving out once the new buyers were going to move in like a normal sale. I thought my wife's lawyer was being unreasonable and that part wouldn't be granted. It is not like I am a madman or something.
In hindsight I should have bought her out a year ago and rented out the basement after I finished a few things. Now the house price has gone up $200K or more. The house next door just sold for $1.15 M - $150K over asking price with multiple offers in 2 weeks. I am sure my wife knows this as one of her best friends lives across the road. I just didn't see this pandemic thing happening.
I agreed at the hearing to sell the house with more time requested as I had a list of home improvements (some are in the works) before selling that I reviewed with my wife. The Judge thought I should have avoided the hearing and worked out something with my wife's lawyer. I tried a few times to finalize a Separation Agreement but the lawyer wasn't reasonable in her offers to avoid a hearing. In many cases some lawyers try to create conflict as it is financially beneficial in my opinion. I have dealt with a few lawyers in business and fortunately I was able to state facts and resolve the matters rather than a demanding aggressive approach.
Thanks again for your input.
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Old 02-01-2021, 12:09 PM
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What you think is reasonable and what is actually reasonable are two different things. She could have seen you as completely unreasonable and it sounds like you stalled. Judges arent stupid. And even if you had a good case being self repped, it clearly wasnt good enough.

Appealing this will just cut more into your share of the home. Pack your stuff and go.


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Old 02-01-2021, 02:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rockscan View Post
Appealing this will just cut more into your share of the home. Pack your stuff and go.
The resulting costs order will demonstrate the futility in appealing the effort and the compounding costs for "fighting it out in court".
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Old 02-01-2021, 02:09 PM
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Appeals are not a 'second kick at the can'. They are much harder to win than the first hearing, particularly so on an order such at this. There is little, if any, chance you'd win an appeal

Give your money to a family lawyer if you like to advance the appeal, but it seems like a waste.
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Old 02-01-2021, 04:07 PM
TimmyC TimmyC is offline
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I read about the appeal process and the chance of winning with a good case is still very low. I am told here that it is a standard part of the process for me having to move out before the for sale sign goes up in a house that I have lived in for 25 years. Pack your stuff and go they say. I am sure the lawyers wouldn't say that but they won't make any guarantees either. They would take my money though and take a retainer fee.
I thought I was in trouble with a young female Judge and the rest all females on the Zoom call. The Judge use to have a local law practice up until 2019 and promoted/sponsored events for young women to get into the legal profession. She also had celebrations for National Women's Day at her law practice and had an all women team. Come on - I didn't have a chance.
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Old 02-01-2021, 04:09 PM
Kinso Kinso is offline
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Quote:
She also had celebrations for National Women's Day at her law practice and had an all women team. Come on - I didn't have a chance.
You lost because the law isn't on your side on this issue. Not because the Judge was a female.
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Old 02-01-2021, 04:20 PM
rockscan rockscan is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TimmyC View Post
- I kind of ignored the request as it didn't make sense to me and I suggested a Separation Agreement.
- Early 2020 I sent a low offer to purchase
- I delayed things again with her new lawyer
- I took advantage of the Covid
scheduling and I said I was available end of January 2021.
The reason you lost is you have been sitting on a million dollar asset for three years. She wanted her share of the asset. If it had been you and she had been dragging her heels you would have been livid.

Take the loss and save your money.


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Old 02-01-2021, 04:36 PM
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Even with the Order you can still make her an offer that pretty much replicates whatever her last offer was if you are still wanting to keep the house. She of course can still refuse your Offer and you would have to obey the Order, but if you mirrored her last Offer it would mean the two of you would not hav etc pay for staging/bills/real estate commission.

You tried to game the system and it backfired. She was beyond reasonable in not pursing her legal right to sell the house well before now (that is settled law and you were never going to win against decades of case law).
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