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  1. #1
    aaroneva is offline Junior Member
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    How are the Money and assets divide after we divorce?

    We have been married for over 11 years and my wife saving cd's have about $800,000. This money are saving during our married and put in cd's on her name only and her mother as beneficiary. I'd like to know if we divorce, is this money will split 50/50 or her money. We have a joint checking account in our names but it has a very little money in it.
    What about my 401k and other retirement plans? She doesn't have any retirement plan. Please share you knowledge, experience. Thanks so much.
    What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)?
  2. #2
    Ohiogal is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by aaroneva View Post
    We have been married for over 11 years and my wife saving cd's have about $800,000. This money are saving during our married and put in cd's on her name only and her mother as beneficiary. I'd like to know if we divorce, is this money will split 50/50 or her money. We have a joint checking account in our names but it has a very little money in it.
    What about my 401k and other retirement plans? She doesn't have any retirement plan. Please share you knowledge, experience. Thanks so much.
    What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)?
    From where did the money that went into the CDs originate?
    Parents should remember 3 things: Love your kids more than you hate your ex; when you have children the relationship with the other parent is until death; your children determine what type of nursing home you end up in.
    Nothing stated by me should be taken as giving you legal advice or forming an attorney/client relationship.

    Attorney-GAL in Ohio.

    I've removed the knife from my back, polished it, and will one day return it -- long after you think I have forgotten.
  3. #3
    mistoffolees is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by aaroneva View Post
    We have been married for over 11 years and my wife saving cd's have about $800,000. This money are saving during our married and put in cd's on her name only and her mother as beneficiary. I'd like to know if we divorce, is this money will split 50/50 or her money. We have a joint checking account in our names but it has a very little money in it.
    What about my 401k and other retirement plans? She doesn't have any retirement plan. Please share you knowledge, experience. Thanks so much.
    What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)?
    Please provide the name of your state as well as saying where the money came from.

    In general for most states, marital assets are split 50:50. That is, if the money was money that one or both of you earned while you were married, you'll each get 1/2 even if it is only in one person's name.

    If it's separate property, it belongs to the individual, not to the couple. Examples of separate property would be inheritances, money that the person had before the wedding, sale of property that the person had before the wedding (with some caveats and exceptions), or some types of insurance settlements.

    Any 401k or retirement plans are treated the same way. Any accumulation during the marriage is marital. Any money that was there before the marriage is separate. AGAIN, this is very general. In community property states, the rules are slightly different.

    You will need to clarify one thing. The account is solely in your wife's name and the mother is simply the beneficiary. If the mother's name is on the account, that makes things more complicated.
  4. #4
    aaroneva is offline Junior Member
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    What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? VA
    As I stated "This money are saving during our married " from her income. All my earned money went to joint checking account. If we have some extra money from checking acct she put in cd's with ONLY HER NAME and her mother as benificiary. I don't want to get in the fight because I want my name on cd's. I'm thinking if we divorce it'll split anyway therefore; I don't care about what's name on CD's. As your comment; it's doesn't matter just her name or both names on CD's, it'll be 50:50 anyway.
    What about her house before our wedding, now in our names on the deed and mortgage ?
    How can we say this much of money was yours before wedding and How can I say this amount of money retirement was mine before wedding. It's over 11 years ago.
    Last edited by aaroneva; 10-07-2010 at 10:31 AM.
  5. #5
    mistoffolees is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by aaroneva View Post
    What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? VA
    As I stated "This money are saving during our married " from her income. All my earned money went to joint checking account. If we have some extra money from checking acct she put in cd's with ONLY HER NAME and her mother as benificiary. I don't want to get in the fight because I want my name on cd's. I'm thinking if we divorce it'll split anyway therefore; I don't care about what's name on CD's. As your comment; it's doesn't matter just her name or both names on CD's, it'll be 50:50 anyway.
    What about her house before our wedding, now in our names on the deed and mortgage ?
    How can we say this much of money was yours before wedding and How can I say this amount of money retirement was mine before wedding. It's over 11 years ago.
    You shouldn't have much trouble with the CDs. HOWEVER, since the money is solely in her name, she can do what she wants with it. For example, if she adds her mother's name to the CDs, then $400 K would belong to her mother and $400 K would be marital - and split between the two of you. Or, she could give all of it to her mother (might create some gift taxes problems, but they can work around that).

    IF you had filed for divorce, there would be an automatic lock on the assets and she would not be able to do anything with them without court approval (other than normal living expenses or legal expenses). But since no divorce has been filed, she can do what she wants. Now, if she were to add her mother's name or give the money away before you filed for divorce, she MIGHT be forced to account for the money, particularly if the filing is soon after she gives the money away because there is a 'look back' period in most states. DO NOT RELY ON THIS OPINION, but you MIGHT be protected if you filed for divorce immediately after she gave the money away, but please see an attorney before accepting that (there is, of course, also the problem of Mom spending or hiding the money).

    401K and retirement accounts will be split, hopefully with a QDRO if you're smart (that means that the money is split without cashing out the account which would incur a tax liability in most cases). Any amounts in the account before you were married would be separate property, but you would have to prove the amount. If you don't have records, you would subpoena records from the broker. Any amounts added since the marriage (either your contributions or growth in the account) would be marital. Even there, it is sometimes possible to separate out the portion of the value growth based on pre-marital investments.For example, see:
    [url=http://www.seattle-divorce-lawyer.com/washington-state-divorce-laws-property-division.html]Property Division Washington State Property Law in Divorce Cases. How is property divided in WA State when parties split up and end their marriage? - Seattle Divorce Attorney. Washington State Lawyer[/url]

    The home is a little trickier. Your name is on the title so you both own 1/2 of the home and 1/2 of the mortgage (if any). HOWEVER, even though you're in a community property state, it can be complicated and there might be ways to separate out her equity at the time of marriage.

    You have enough assets that you really need to see a good local attorney now. Even if you're not planning to divorce, you should find out what is involved and how to protect yourself.
  6. #6
    aaroneva is offline Junior Member
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    Thank you so much for your input. Can you clear on this for me please.
    If she cashs out all cd's and give them to her mother before or during our separate and months later if I file for divorce that $800 K will no longer divide 50:50 right. I know that she doesn't want me to have any penny of that money. As you suggest it if I know that CDs cash out I have to file right away right?
  7. #7
    mistoffolees is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by aaroneva View Post
    Thank you so much for your input. Can you clear on this for me please.
    If she cashs out all cd's and give them to her mother before or during our separate and months later if I file for divorce that $800 K will no longer divide 50:50 right. I know that she doesn't want me to have any penny of that money. As you suggest it if I know that CDs cash out I have to file right away right?
    If she gives ALL of the CDs to her mother, you don't get any (although a good divorce attorney might be able to get some of it back).

    If she puts her mother's name on the CDs as co-owner, then half is marital and half is her mother's - you'd get $200 K.
  8. #8
    aaroneva is offline Junior Member
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    Wow! thank you again for a quick clarification. I'm ok for her to put her mother on the cds but I know she doesn't like me to have any of that money. If she die, She wants all of her money goes to her family side eventhough that money was earning during the time of married (it's in her will).
  9. #9
    mistoffolees is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by aaroneva View Post
    Wow! thank you again for a quick clarification. I'm ok for her to put her mother on the cds but I know she doesn't like me to have any of that money. If she die, She wants all of her money goes to her family side eventhough that money was earning during the time of married (it's in her will).
    PLEASE go see an attorney. If she puts her mother on those CDs, you lose half of your value.

    And you should also talk to an attorney about estate planning. Just the CDs and house probably put you at a million dollars- which is certainly high enough to be thinking about estate planning.

    I would also suggest that you talk to a financial planner. Having $800 K in CDs seems foolish. Plus, the idea that your income is used to pay all the household expenses and all of her income goes into savings - which is then 'her' money - seems awfully unfair.
  10. #10
    aaroneva is offline Junior Member
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    Yes, I'll see an attorney if she puts her mother on CDs. I feel unfair for me as well but; whenever we talk about money we end up argue about that. Thank you so much for all advices.
  11. #11
    mistoffolees is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by aaroneva View Post
    Yes, I'll see an attorney if she puts her mother on CDs. I feel unfair for me as well but; whenever we talk about money we end up argue about that.
    Then get the two of you into counseling. A good counselor can help you work through issues to come up with a fair solution and better understanding of each other. Maybe it will even make divorce unnecessary.
  12. #12
    Ohiogal is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by mistoffolees View Post
    PLEASE go see an attorney. If she puts her mother on those CDs, you lose half of your value.
    And you should also talk to an attorney about estate planning. Just the CDs and house probably put you at a million dollars- which is certainly high enough to be thinking about estate planning.

    I would also suggest that you talk to a financial planner. Having $800 K in CDs seems foolish. Plus, the idea that your income is used to pay all the household expenses and all of her income goes into savings - which is then 'her' money - seems awfully unfair.
    The bolded is NOT necessarily correct. It could be considered dissipation of marital assets and WIFE would lose her portion while husband would retain his full marital portion.
    Parents should remember 3 things: Love your kids more than you hate your ex; when you have children the relationship with the other parent is until death; your children determine what type of nursing home you end up in.
    Nothing stated by me should be taken as giving you legal advice or forming an attorney/client relationship.

    Attorney-GAL in Ohio.

    I've removed the knife from my back, polished it, and will one day return it -- long after you think I have forgotten.
  13. #13
    mistoffolees is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ohiogal View Post
    The bolded is NOT necessarily correct. It could be considered dissipation of marital assets and WIFE would lose her portion while husband would retain his full marital portion.
    I mentioned that possibility.

    It really depends on WHEN they do that. If the wife gives the CDs away and then no one files for divorce for several years, it's going to be tougher to claim dissipation of assets. Not impossible, but harder.
  14. #14
    aaroneva is offline Junior Member
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    Wow! that make me feel better therefore; I try to avoid asking her to put my name or our children names on cds. However, it makes me sick on my stomach when she put her mother as a beneficiary, not our children. I'll be happy if ALL our assets go to our children if she die. I can make money again, but I hate our money goes to her mother/father that is unfair for me.

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