ACTIVITY: Dividing Property

Jules and Anthony recently separated. They had lived together for 3 years. They purchased a home together. It was recently appraised at $450,000 and there current mortgage balance is $300,000. During this time, Jules’s parents died and she inherited about $60,000. Anthony has $5,000 in credit card debt which he accumulated while they were living together. He also owns a car valued at $4000, which he has had for 6 years.

Do you think Jules and Anthony could be spouses under the FLA?

Answer: They are unmarried spouses because they have been living together more than 2 years in a marriage-like relationship.

Which property may be considered family property and which property may be excluded property?

Answer: The home may be family property and may be shared 50/50 regardless of each spouse’s contribution to it. Jules inheritance may be excluded property and will likely not be shared. Anthony’s car will be excluded, as he owned it prior to the start of the relationship.

Who is responsible for paying the credit card debt?

Answer: In general, the Family Law Act says that spouses are equally responsible for family debt and they both have to share the responsibility for paying if off since the debt was accumulated during the relationship.