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    desertflower49's Avatar
    desertflower49 Posts: 4, Reputation: 1
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    #1

    May 21, 2014, 04:31 PM
    Buying a home with boyfriend
    My boyfriend bought a home and it is in both our names, as joint tenants on the deed. We have been together for 7 years now but own the home only 6 years. He now wants me to leave. Can he sell the home without my signature? My income is only $600 a month and his is $8000 a month. He told me I can't afford to fight him in court. I live in Arizona, what are my rights?
    smoothy's Avatar
    smoothy Posts: 25,495, Reputation: 2853
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    #2

    May 21, 2014, 04:56 PM
    Yep... He can force a partition suit. You will get you share of the equity if any... any owner can do that of a property can do that when there are multiple owners with interests in it, you really can't do anything to fight it. He can't do it directly without your signature, but the court will do it if he petitions for it. Your only options would be to buy out his share in it. You can't keep it from being sold. I'd let the court deal with it... at least you have a better shot at getting your share of the equity if any.

    That assumes he hasn't paid 100% of the costs and he can prove it you likely won't get half if he can do that. Unless you split the payments and can prove it.

    If you have no equity or worse owe more than its worth....you won't get a dime.
    ScottGem's Avatar
    ScottGem Posts: 64,970, Reputation: 6056
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    #3

    May 22, 2014, 05:06 AM
    I'm not sure if smoothy actually answered the question you asked. Since your name is on the deed, he cannot sell it without your signature. He can, however, force a partition of the property and try to sell his share. Another thing he can try, is to prove that since you have paid nothing toward the purchase and maintenance that you are not entitled to a share. However, I don't think either is a viable tactic. Yes, he can get lawyers to fight it out, but you can countersue to include court costs so it might not cost you anything if you win. And you might find an attorney to take the case on that basis.

    The bottom line here is, since your name is on the deed as joint tenant you own half the house. That means he can't force you to leave because it is your home. He can't evict you and if he becomes violent you can call the police have HIM removed and get a restraining order against him. You are also entitled to half the proceeds of any sale.
    AK lawyer's Avatar
    AK lawyer Posts: 12,592, Reputation: 977
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    #4

    May 22, 2014, 08:34 AM
    Quote Originally Posted by ScottGem View Post
    .... Yes, he can get lawyers to fight it out, but you can countersue to include court costs so it might not cost you anything if you win. And you might find an attorney to take the case on that basis. ...
    I'm afraid that's not likely.

    Court costs are not the same as attorney fees. Costs include such things as filing fees, witness fees, deposition transcription fees, etc.

    In most states, one cannot normally recover his or her attorney fees (absent provision for attorney fees in a contract).

    And, in any event, an attorney normally wouldn't be willing to take a case like this for a contingent fee, although it wouldn't hurt to ask.

    OP should have sought advice from an attorney before she bought the property, and insisted on a contract with her BF to cover the "what if we split up" scenario.
    desertflower49's Avatar
    desertflower49 Posts: 4, Reputation: 1
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    #5

    May 23, 2014, 08:32 AM
    Thanks, the property is completely paid off.
    smoothy's Avatar
    smoothy Posts: 25,495, Reputation: 2853
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    #6

    May 23, 2014, 08:38 AM
    How much did each of you pay towards its cost? Its very unlikely to be a 50/50 split if one side can prove they paid most or all of it. It will likely be porportional to what can be proved was paid by each side. Its not a marital asset acquired after marriage so an even split isn't a sure thing.

    If you paid for it all, and can prove it... you will likely get all or most of it. If he paid 100% of and can prove it he will likely get that.

    If neither of you can prove what you paid towards it...then the judge might rule an even split.
    desertflower49's Avatar
    desertflower49 Posts: 4, Reputation: 1
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    #7

    May 23, 2014, 08:39 AM
    I think it is the other way around, He should have sought advice before buying the property and putting my name on it with him. He is very mentally abusive and controlling.
    smoothy's Avatar
    smoothy Posts: 25,495, Reputation: 2853
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    #8

    May 23, 2014, 08:42 AM
    Quote Originally Posted by desertflower49 View Post
    I think it is the other way around, He should have sought advice before buying the property and putting my name on it with him. He is very mentally abusive and controlling.
    What you think really doesn't matter... what law says does.... if you have ten people that own a property... ONE of them can force it to be sold... and a sale could be considered the other people buying them out of their share.

    WHo was more controlling or more abusive than who... has no bearing on this.

    I'm begining to think at this point based on your last post (what you said and HOW you said it)...he paid for the entire thing.

    Let us know roughly what percentage of the total cost each of you contributed.
    AK lawyer's Avatar
    AK lawyer Posts: 12,592, Reputation: 977
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    #9

    May 23, 2014, 09:06 AM
    My income is only $600 a month and his is $8000 a month.
    And what, pray tell, does that have to do with the price of petunias in Patagonia? We are not talking about a divorce settlement, but rather a partition action. Thus your respective incomes are immaterial.
    ScottGem's Avatar
    ScottGem Posts: 64,970, Reputation: 6056
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    #10

    May 23, 2014, 09:33 AM
    It doesn't matter that the property is paid off. The bottom line is you own half of it. He can't kick you out because you are an owner. He can force you to sell, but you shouldn't really care about stopping a sale. All you need to know if you have to sign the deed and yo0u want to make sure you get your share of the sale proceeds.
    joypulv's Avatar
    joypulv Posts: 21,593, Reputation: 2941
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    #11

    May 23, 2014, 09:41 AM
    Smoothy, I don't agree that we need to know what she contributed. She has him over a barrel, not the other way around. She is half owner no matter how you slice it.

    My first real estate was as a 1/4 owner. I had a side contract. Fortunately all was amicable when we split up.
    smoothy's Avatar
    smoothy Posts: 25,495, Reputation: 2853
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    #12

    May 23, 2014, 09:56 AM
    Quote Originally Posted by joypulv View Post
    Smoothy, I don't agree that we need to know what she contributed. She has him over a barrel, not the other way around. She is half owner no matter how you slice it.

    My first real estate was as a 1/4 owner. I had a side contract. Fortunately all was amicable when we split up.
    I think if it can be proven in court she contributed nothing towards it... it matters a great deal. She isn't married so this isn't a division of marital assets.
    desertflower49's Avatar
    desertflower49 Posts: 4, Reputation: 1
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    #13

    Aug 28, 2019, 02:11 PM
    It has been quite a while since I replied to this thread. But I came across it in my computer and decided it was important that I follow up here.

    First of all I would like to reply to Smoothie. I think your comment was a little sarcastic, maybe even a little nasty. But I'm not surprised coming from an attorney or want-a-be attorney . Who says people have to go to court. If you know what you're doing not everything has to end up in court. You get the right paralegal or attorney and you can usually settle every thing on good terms. I have found through this process that attorneys only want to turn people against each other because of the money that is involved. They will only represent the one with all the money and then try to drain him or her clean. Well thank God there are still good paralegals out there that are not after the money, but instead just to make everything right.

    My ex-boyfriend and I were able to settle things on very good terms. Yes, he put more money into the home than what I did (as if it is any of your business). We split every thing 50-50. He deeded the property over to me and I am paying him off at 0% interest with just a Bill of Sale.

    Remember people, you don't have to get an expensive attorney or always go to court to settle real estate disputes. If you are two decent human beings and you still have an ounce of decency in your heart you can always do this on good terms. Do not let an attorney turn you agents each other. We refuse to let that happen when we were going through the process.

    After my ex-boyfriend spent $750 on two different attorneys with no help and insight. I contacted a paralegal and she did everything for both of us. Including our wells, Power of attorneys, and she even drew up the contract for the Bill of Sale on the home, and so much more I won't mention here. All for only $300.00.

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