There are many things to consider when you want to know how to protect your assets during a divorce and foreclosure in Ohio. One of the first steps to take is being aware of your state’s laws about foreclosure and divorce. In some states the court does not have to wait for a sale to occur on the house in order for the home to be considered “foreclosed on.” Other states require that a showing of default be made by the bank before they will approve a settlement.
If the family home is worth less than the mortgage, then there may be no equity to speak of at all. If the value is more than the mortgage, then there may be some marital property left as well as some cash or gifts that the ex-spouse may have accumulated over time. This is especially true if the divorce was uncontested. In these cases, protecting the remaining assets becomes the responsibility of the couple.
If there is some money that the ex-spouse has contributed to the marriage, then the proceeds must be divided according to the division of marital property, or according to whatever price was determined by the court at the time of the divorce. One way to protect assets during a divorce and foreclosure sale is to ask the realtor to divvy up the remaining funds and distribute them to the remaining beneficiaries. For instance, if there was some money left over from the pre-nuptial agreement, the realtor might suggest that each spouse pay a reasonable amount to one of the intended recipients. Some couples choose to save this money for a rainy day. It could be used for a down payment on a house or other real estate purchase in the future.
Another way to protect the assets during divorce and uncontested divorce proceedings is to remain as actively involved as possible in the property settlement with the other spouse. If children are involved in the negotiations, then parents should try to have as much input as possible. One of the ways to get the other spouse to agree to a property settlement is to offer to share joint possession of the home with them. This can also help the other spouse realize that they may not get all of the money that they are owed, but it can also help them understand the importance of a property settlement and that it may be better than trying to negotiate a normal divorce settlement.
When a divorce occurs, most states require that a spouse to notify the other spouse that they have been granted divorce. This notice is called an “automatic stay”, and it lasts for the full period of the divorce (ie. until it is lifted by order of the court). The automatic stay will prevent the other spouse from going on with their business while the divorce case is pending. This means that the ex-spouse cannot file tax returns, obtain a credit card, change ownership of any property, or take any other action that they would have been able to do before the divorce became final.
Once the divorce becomes final, the property will be divided according to the provisions set forth in the divorce decree. Usually this includes the division of the marital estate (including joint ownership of the home) and then between the parents (potential for children). In most cases, if one party (spouse) is contesting the divorce, they must show proof of the existence of financial hardship. This is usually done through the submission of bankruptcy documents.