I divorced my husband back in May 2010 and was given the residential home to live in for 36 months without refinancing the home. Well I decided to sell in a August of 2011. When the title was pulled to show the house had a clean title.... it was discovered tha a lein was placed on the house from an apartment complex that my ex husband lived in and walked out of after we divorced. Can the apt complex put this lein on my house if my ex husband has not lived there since 9/21/2008 and lost the house in our divorce?
4 Answers from Attorneys
You failed to tell us the facts that are important. Was the judgment lien placed on the property while still owned by your husband? Whether or not he lived there is not important.
If you mishandled the divorce, probably yes.
If you had a lawyer and properly had the house deeded to you, no.
You didn't tell us those details so there is no way to answer you as to whether they can or cannot or what remedies, if any, that you have.
Divorce law and real property law are two entirely different things. The divorce court can divide marital property. The key is the word marital - anything is presumptively marital if it was aquired during the marriage and before the date of separation.
The fact that the divorce court "awarded" you the house suggests that the house was allocated to your share. But I don't know if the house was jointly owned by you and your husband and he was orded to quitclaim his interest in the home to you or if the home was somehow your separate property and the court just noted that in its order.
Since you indicate that your ex-husband left the apartment after the divorce, could it be that the home was in both names and you were given possession, but you had to sell in 36 months after the divorce and you were to split the proceeds? If that is the case, then the divorce would have severed the marital relationship but you would still own the realty with your ex-husband and the judgment might be proper. If he had already quitclaimed his share to you before the judgment was entered, then it sounds like the judgment was not proper.
I think I would go back to your family law attorney to ask for an explanation. If it turns out that the judgment was proper, then it would attach to your husband's share of the equity, but in that case, I would go back to the family court to see if they are able to grant added relief, such as alimony since you are compelled to pay a non-marital debt of your husband out of what was supposed to be your share.
Pull a 3-in1 credit report from Equifax.com, go to the courthouse clerk that issued the judgment and get a copy of the complete court file on the case, and contact me through my website, kaidenlaw.com.
We are a Georgia Consumer Advocacy Law Firm. We represent the little guy.
Robert Kaiden, Esq.