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  1. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2018
    Posts
    160

    Default Re: Disagreement Over Interpretation of a Marital Settlement Agreement

    As I understand the facts, the car was totaled in an accident. As a result, the ex-husband received $X from either the at-fault party's liability insurer or from collision coverage that was maintained on the car. The ex-husband paid the $X to lender (why the money wasn't paid directly to the lender isn't clear, but it's unimportant), leaving a $1,000 balance on the loan.

    Is all that right?

    If so, then I agree with comments that the OP's liability for the $1k balance of the loan is clear. The agreement required "that Wife [will] timely pay[] all costs, expenses and liabilities associated with the Beetle, including but not limited to the loan." The language that makes payment of the loan a condition to the OP's use of the vehicle would almost certainly not be interpreted to saddle the ex-husband with the loan balance under the circumstances, especially given the frequent use of "defend and indemnify" in the agreement.

    Obviously, the way to protect against this situation was to obtain gap coverage.

    As a practical matter, it's $1,000. It's not worth going to court over this.

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    37,183

    Default Re: Language Unclear in Marital Settlement Agreement

    Quote Quoting Guybrush
    View Post
    I disagree with everyone else. I think the contract gives a release - although probably not intended to do that.

    "If Husband makes any payment relating to the Beetle to protect his credit rating or otherwise, or if Wife lets the insurance on the Beetle lapse, then, upon thirty (30) days' notice to Wife, Husband shall have the right to take possession of the Beetle and sell the Beetle to pay off the outstanding loan obligation. Wife shall indemnity and hold Husband harmless for any of the payment relating to the Beetle that she herein agrees to pay."

    By not making a payment, or letting the insurance lapse, the husband's right is to take possession of the car. So, let him take possession - that's what the contract states.
    The husband MAY repossess the vehicle That isnít a MUST take action.

    regardless, the wife is obligated to indemnify the husband for any expenses paid towards the car.

    so the husband doesnít have to repossess the car and he can hold her liable for money paid towards the car.

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