questions & answers
Question: My husband and I are in the process of getting a divorce, am I able to purchase a house before the divorce is final?
Yes, you are entitled to purchase a house while a divorce is pending. But you should anticipate complications in the paperwork. Because you are still married, many lenders will insist on your husband's signature in some form (e.g. on a quitclaim deed) in order to protect themselves from liability and prevent disputes down the road. For that reason alone, and to avoid future claims to the real estate, most people wait until their family law case is done, and they can display a formal divorce decree. It really does make things a little simpler.
Also, you should be careful what money you use to make the down payment. If you draw from marital funds to buy the house (which may include salary or even a bonus in your paycheck that you earned before the divorce petition was served), then the marital community (i.e. you and your husband together) may still possess a lien or other legal interest in the land - even though technically it constitutes your separate property. See A.R.S. § 25-318(C) that talks about such liens You might want to talk to a family law attorney (at least for a brief consultation) to discuss this issue. If you do, make sure to bring documents that will prove how you intend to pay for the property, and be ready to estimate how long the divorce case will last (i.e. how complicated is the case?), and to explain your urgency.
My husband and I are in the process of getting a divorce, am I able to purchase a house before the divorce is final?
- Please select your county of residence below.
State Bar of Arizona
Maricopa County Bar
Referral number 602-257-4434
Pima County Bar
Referral number 520-623-4625
National Domestic Violence Hotline
Bankruptcy Court Self Help Center
Certified Legal Document Preparer Program
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