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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    6

    Default Protection of Property After Reconciliation

    My husband left me 3 weeks ago from Tennessee and went to New York, where he has family. He took the family van and 80% of our finances (which honestly wasn't much...about $1600). He wants me to come to New York and be with him. I am considering it because the separation was petty, but I'm concerned about possessions. As of now, he has the van and has blown his cash...I have everything in the house and a car. I have a job that travels with me if needed and a furnished home. He is living with relatives and has little money. He is not in a good position...but I am...

    I have already suggested divorce to my husband with an agreement that the possessions are mine, but he broke down in tears over me "no longer being his wife". I need to know if there is a document we can legally file that gives me possession of everything while we are still married and should things go sour. I know we could have something written up ourselves and notorized but would that hold up in court? Is divorce the only option to have possessions definitely surrendered to me? I know this may seem a bit petty and immoral but I'm just trying to figure out a way to protect myself and my 2 sons before I run off to New York, find it won't work and get kicked out...and left with NOTHING somehow.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    28,906

    Default Re: Protection of property (reconciliation)

    If you are living together as husband and wife, it seems unlikely that such an agreement would be upheld. If you wish to try this I suggest you have the agreement drafted by a family lawyer in the state where you will be living.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    6

    Default Re: Protection of property (reconciliation)

    Quote Quoting aaron
    If you are living together as husband and wife, it seems unlikely that such an agreement would be upheld. If you wish to try this I suggest you have the agreement drafted by a family lawyer in the state where you will be living.
    Thank you, aaron. I am doing some research on this now.

    Our latest drama, we were buying a home together on land contract...the accountant for our landlord had agreed to allow us to do a quit claim deed and my husband sent power of attorney to the landlord in order to allow me to sign him off of the deed since husband was in NY...the landlord however changed his mind and did not want to allow us to do this so everything is in limbo. I am trying to sell this house now. I also now have my own bank account and will not allow him access to this account.

    As a result of much discussion, I am planning to move to NY at the end of July. My husband and his 3 children will be arriving in Tennessee on July 2nd and we will begin packing and saving funds for a move by July 30th. While our discussions have been very hopeful and we both are determined to move forward, I do not wish to be niave where possessions are concerned. I've been burnt in the past, so to speak, and wish to protect what little I do have left.

    An attorney I have obtained informed me that he did not believe an agreemeent such as this exsisted however we could write up our own statement and have it notarized and signed (but did not know if it would stand up in court.) Any more suggestions on how to protect myself should this reconciliation not be successful would be greatly appreciated. (Basically my desire is that if the reconciliation fails, he leaves with the family van and clothing, personal pictures, his children's personal toys...nothing more).

    One more question: My husband was very upset at the thought of an actual divorce...but I was considering a "legal separation"...Would a legal separation protect me? (Sorry this is so long!)

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    6

    Default Re: Protection of property (reconciliation)

    I was just doing some research for options in Tennessee and came across a document called a "Marital Separation agreement." Can I get anyone's thoughts on the validity of the below information?

    Marital Separation & Settlement Agreements

    A Marital Separation Agreement (or Settlement Agreement) is a legal binding agreement between you and your spouse, which resolves many issues like, property and debt division, spousal support, child custody, visitation, child support, insurance coverage, just to name a few (a separation agreement typically addresses over 30 essential issues).

    The separation agreement has two primary purposes:

    1. A separation agreement can settle all of your issues for the period you and your spouse separate until the time of divorce. Some separations can last several months or even years, so it is very important to protect yourself and have all the necessary issues settled between you and your spouse agreed to in writing.

    2. A separation agreement is the final legal document you and your spouse will use to settle all your marital issues in order to get a final judgment or decree for divorce granted by the judge.

    It is very difficult to move on with your life without getting the facts in writing, like, who gets what property and who is responsible for what debt, so a marital separation agreement outlines the rules in a legally binding format.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    28,906

    Default Re: Protection of property (reconciliation)

    Separation agreements, particularly provisions relating to the distribution of property, often are followed by courts on contractual principles. But if you reconcile without divorcing, a prior separation agreement would likely be treated as no longer relevant.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    6

    Default Re: Protection of property (reconciliation)

    Quote Quoting aaron
    Separation agreements, particularly provisions relating to the distribution of property, often are followed by courts on contractual principles. But if you reconcile without divorcing, a prior separation agreement would likely be treated as no longer relevant.
    Thank, aaron! I was afraid of that...So I guess the only thing left to do is to decide if I want to take that chance. I obtained a copy of Tennessee's marital separation agreement (for free...why pay for what is available online at no cost?) and my husband has agreed to agree to whatever terms I set forth in this agreement concerning property...Of course, my fear was that the separation agreement would no longer be valid once I allow him back in the door...

    Oh, I hope I don't have to come back shouting "How do I get my stuff back!?"

    Thanks for your advice and input!

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