I own a house outright in Nevada (No Mortgage). The house is in my name and I am not going to change the title of the home. Getting married and she has moved into my house. We have decided to keep all finances separate (No Joint Bank Accounts or Credit) We are not having children. I pay all bills, utilities, phone ect.. She pays me a small amount per month via her Bank Direct pay to my checking account to cover some household expenses. I have worked very hard to own my home with no mortgage and now that I'm getting married, I want to make sure that in case of a future divorce, she doesn't have rights to it. By her paying me monthly direct pay to my separate checking account, is that comingling money? Its the checking account I use to pay the taxes, insurance and utilities for the house. Can she later try to claim rights to equity in my house because she was paying me monthly rent? The amount she pays me is very small, basically to cover utilities. I DONT want to ask for prenup.
1 Answer from Attorneys
As Samuel Goldwyn (MGM) famously observed, "an oral agreement ain't worth the paper it's printed on." Could a claim be made in a future divorce in the absence of such a prenup? Sure. Would it succeed? Can't tell you. See my articles on the subject, posted at http://www.willicklawgroup.com/palimonycohabitation/; also our property division page.
Usually, "maintenance" of paid-for assets is not the basis of a claim of ownership. But the law is fluid, and that "usually" could change. If you want some reasonable amount of certitude about recognition of the deal you are making, the best practice is to memorialize that agreement in writing.