Mediate This!

Can You Change Ownership Of Your Assets Pending A Divorce?

December 17, 2021 Matthew Brickman, Sydney Mitchell Season 1 Episode 44
Mediate This!
Can You Change Ownership Of Your Assets Pending A Divorce?
Show Notes Transcript

Can You Change Ownership Of Your Assets Pending A Divorce?  Matthew Brickman and Sydney Mitchell answer your most frequently asked questions about divorce as they go over several key points:

  • Assume nothing.
  • Know who you are before you get married. 
  • Know who you're getting married to. 
  • Know the laws and statutes in the state you live in.
  • Don't take advice from anyone who isn't a legal professional in the state in which you're getting married and living in.

If you have a matter, disagreement, or dispute you need professional help with then visit iMediate.com - Email mbrickman@ichatmediation or Call (877) 822-1479

Matthew Brickman is a Florida Supreme Court certified family and appellate mediator who has worked in the 15th and 19th Judicial Circuit Courts since 2009 and 2006 respectively. But what makes him qualified to speak on the subject of conflict resolution is his own personal experience with divorce.

Download Matthew's book on iTunes for FREE:
You're Not the Only One - The Agony of Divorce: The Joy of Peaceful Resolution

Matthew Brickman
President iMediate Inc.
Mediator 20836CFA
iMediateInc.com

Sydney Mitchell:

Hi. My name is Sydney Mitchell.

Matthew Brickman:

Hi, I'm Matthew Brickman, Florida Supreme court mediator. Welcome to the Mediate This! Podcast where we discuss everything mediation and conflict resolution.

Sydney Mitchell:

Welcome everybody to this episode of media . This I'm Sydney sitting here with Matthew and today we are gonna be answering some of the questions that you are listeners have been submitting to us about all things, divorce and mediation. So , um, let's just jump right in. If you do have a question in the future that you would love for us to dive into on an episode of media , this, you can just send an email, submit your questions to info@ichatmediation.com . It'll get sent directly to us and we'll , uh , hopefully be able to answer your questions here.

Matthew Brickman:

So you got another question.

Sydney Mitchell:

Yeah. Our next one says, can you change ownership of your assets pending a divorce?

Matthew Brickman:

Okay. So this is an interesting question because you really have to look at one word and you know what it is, caning

Sydney Mitchell:

Can.

Matthew Brickman:

Hmm . Can you change it? Sure. You can. Should you change it? Absolutely not. <laugh> you know, can, is like, or do you have the ability to do it? Well, sure. You have the ability to do it. If it's yours, you can change the ownership. Should you? Absolutely . Absolutely not . Like that's not a good thing in the , in , in the eyes of the court. Like, so, so for example, give you an example. I had a mediation where the father husband changed ownership of his boat, his jet ski, and the trailer from his name to his and his brother's name saying, well, you can't come and take half of the value of the boat because I'm not the only owner. My brother also owns the boat. Yeah. Okay. Now he did that. And , and well , here here's , here's the other, the other piece of that question pending a divorce. So pending a divorce to me means, okay, you filed it and now you're trying to change ownership. Um, this guy in this particular story, he actually did it within close proximity, like right before the divorce. So it was like , well , everybody can see that.

Sydney Mitchell:

So what's that I said, everybody can see that you're changing ownership of assets immediately at that same time. So I just would imagine that that would, yeah.

Matthew Brickman:

And so it was in very close proximity of filing to where there's an assumption going now you're trying to just , or hide an asset. Right. I've seen it with bank counts. I've even seen it with homes where all of a sudden they've like, oh, you know, quick de you know, I'm gonna , I'm gonna quick claim de this to my mom. My mom now is on the de I'm like really, you know , um,

Sydney Mitchell:

Side note , I'm really loving these questions because they are bringing up some, so many things that I personally not granted, I'm not married, but so many things I never would've thought of. And I hope it's the same for our listeners because I have been learning so, so much. So just listeners, thank you for your questions. Keep sending them in cuz they're generating some good conversation.

Matthew Brickman:

One of the things Sydney that I have realized in the, I guess, 14 years, 2,500 plus mediations that I've done people. I mean, and , and you can tell from the questions and the answers and the stories people are creative. Oh yeah . People are really creative. Um, I mean just, you know, I've stopped being surprised because people are creative. Like, you know, I mean, like I remember when I first, when I first started doing mediation, like, oh my gosh, I've seen it all. No, I hadn't seen half of it. Not even. And even 14 years into it. I think I'm still at the tip of the iceberg. I haven't even know all the iceberg under the water. Like people are really creative in what they try to do. Another thing they try to do is, is , is like with bank accounts, they try to transfer the money or transfer the name on the bank account. And they think just because here here's the other big misconception people think, because my name is on it. You don't have any claim to it. So it's a bank account that is in Matthew and Sid's name, therefore, okay. Sydney's entitled to half of it, but this other account that's only in Matthew's name. Well, Sid can't touch that. No, that's not true. Yeah. You know , the only time that's true is if that was premarital asset and if, and if it never, ever, ever was co-mingled in any way, shape or form. But other than that, just because, you know, and , and , and , and look, I , I got that , uh , the other day I had one where , um , the wife had good credit. So during the course of the marriage, all of the credit cards that were taken out were in her name. So the husband's like, she's the one with the debt. Not me. Nobody. That's not how it works. Now. He had here, here's, what's interesting. He had all the assets, but she was paying the debt on him , but they were all titled to him. So he's thinking, well, I'm gonna keep all the assets and she's strapped with all the debt. And it's like, know , and so being that the bank can't supersede the court and the court can't supersede the bank. So we can't really give him the debt, cuz the bank's gonna come after her. We had to give her the assets to equalize out the debt. Oh wow. He wasn't very happy about that. And he had also tried changing some names and, and out the bank account, oh, well this, you know, this is now when our kids, you know , and , and I've seen that too where like , like they've, they've changed it and put it in, in theirs, in a child's name and then tried to play the, oh well now you're trying to take our children's money. It's like, look, your three year old , doesn't have any money. Like I even had one the other day where, where , where these kids were in college and mom and dad both were taking money out of the kids' college accounts. Right. They were, they were just checking accounts. They weren't like 5 29 plans or anything just checking account. And so in the divorce, the mother was like, well, I want him to put back half of it for these kids. And we're like, look, if you guys want to agree to it fine. But in Florida, your over 18 year old kids are not part of your divorce. You, you took the money fine. You want to put it back fine. If not, it's all considered yours anyway, not theirs, it's yours. Um , but you know, there was some ownership changes. So yeah, you should never change ownership because that's not gonna change the outcome. It , it , it's not gonna reduce the division of equity. Um, if , if anything, it's gonna look really bad. Um , yeah . Yeah. It's just gonna look really bad. And, and I've seen it too, where not only do they try to change the ownership, but they'll liquidate accounts, just trying to bleed the other one out. And it always amazes me, you know , oh , this is so messy. It is . And, and you know, with sitting , I sit there looking at 'em going. And at one time they both looked great. There was music playing, they were dancing, their first dance to get other, they had just said, I do life was, oh, their life was ahead of 'em and this is what it's turned out to be like, this is the person that you say that you would love, cherish support, good times, bad times forever until you die. And this is what you're doing. Like, you know, and it , it breaks my heart. Um , because you know, I mean, people can get really mean to the one person that they swore forever to on this planet, which goes back to know who you are before. You're gonna share yourself with somebody else. So you don't end up dancing your dance and then doing a dance with me many years later.

Sydney Mitchell:

Oh , that's really, really good.

Matthew Brickman:

Occasionally Sydney and I will be releasing Q & A bonus episodes where we will answer questions and give you a personal shout out.

Sydney Mitchell:

If you have a comment or question regarding anything that we discuss, email us at info@ichatmediation.com that's info@ichatmediation.com and stay tuned to hear your shout out and have your question answered here on the show.

Matthew Brickman:

For more information about my services or to schedule your mediation with me, either in person or using my iChatMediation Virtual Platform built by Cisco Communications. Visit me online at www.iMediateInc.com. Call me at 561-262-9121, Toll-Free at 877-822-1479 or email me at MBrickman@iChatMediation.com.