Stockton, CA asked in Family Law for California

Q: how to handle a house in divorce

my girlfriend is getting divorced she own a home with her ex she is on the title but the mortgage is solely in his name. they have agreed he will do a quit claim deed on the house and give it to her. the only question remains do they still have to go and refinance to put her on the mortgage?

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2 Lawyer Answers

A: Yes, unless she refinances it, the liability under the mortgage note will remain with him.

Kathryn Irene Phillips
Kathryn Irene Phillips
  • North Hollywood, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: This comes up in divorces all the time. In dividing the property between spouses, just a quitclaim deed to put 100% of the title in one party’s name does NOT relieve the other party of his credit obligations under a mortgage that has his name on it. Any late payments she makes on that mortgage will negatively affect his credit. So, she will have to refinance the property to take his name off the mortgage. If she doesn’t qualify for that, she could ask for a year or so to do the refinance and hope that she will qualify in another year or so. If she simply will never qualify for the refinance, then one of two things must happen: 1) her husband agrees to keep his name on the mortgage (not likely to happen); or 2) the house is sold.

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