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Divorce Lawyers

Thyden Gross and Callahan LLPCounselors and Attorneys at Law

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Maryland Divorce Legal Crier

News and comments about divorce, child support, child custody, alimony, equitable property distribution, father’s rights, mother’s rights, family law, laws on divorce and other legal information in Maryland.

Posts Tagged ‘property division’

The Tale of the Two Kayaks and Other Divorce Trainwrecks

Wednesday, June 24th, 2015

We went to a birthday party for one of our neighbors last night. Sooner or later at parties, people around me start telling me their divorce trainwreck stories.

One woman told me about how she and her ex fought over who would get the two kayaks.

“Why didn’t you take one and let your ex take one?” I asked.
“They were a matched pair.”
“ So,” I said, “Just buy another matched pair.”
“They were hand-made and unique.”

It ended up that the husband bought the wife’s kayak for $750.

More divorce trainwreck stories.

Inheritance as Income

Wednesday, January 28th, 2015

Leroy and Mynell Gassaway married in 1952.  They separated in 1979.

In their DC divorce, the trial court divided marital property upon consideration of the fact that Leroy’s mother owned a house and that Leroy was the only heir and would inherit the property.  After all, “opportunities for the future acquisition of assets” is one of the factors a judge must consider in dividing martial property.

On appeal, however, the court said this was not an equitable way to divide property.

In Mumma v. Mumma, 280 A.2d 73, 76 (D.C. 1971), this court ruled that gifts to the husband from his parents could not be considered in determining his income for purposes of computing his alimony obligation, presumably, because any expectation of gifts is inherently speculative and thus could not be counted upon as a predictable portion of the husband’s annual financial return.  Accord Scott v. Scott, 645 S.W. 2d 193, 198 (Mo. Ct. App. 1982) (despite history of gifts to wife from parents, court property declined to consider “such an uncertain source of funds as future gifts” in computing her alimony award).  The same reasoning is applicable to anticipated gifts of real property or other assets, e.g., though inheritance.

The court recognized decisions from some courts ruling otherwise, but rejected this approach as “mischievous”.

— Gassaway v. Gassaway, 489 A.2d 1073 (D.C. 1985)

When Even a Billion Dollars Is Not Enough

Friday, November 14th, 2014

Sue Ann Ham was awarded nearly a billion dollars in her divorce from energy tycoon Harold Hamm in Oklahoma.

But her attorney says that’s less than 6 percent of the couple’s estimated $18 billion wealth.

She is planning to appeal.   More.

Tax Planning for Divorce (Part 6-Asset Transfers)

Thursday, March 21st, 2013

Guest Post by John Ellsworth, Esq.

When a divorce settlement moves property (typically, your house and part of his or her 401-K) from one spouse to another, the recipient doesn’t pay tax on that transfer. That’s the good news.

But it’s important to remember that the property’s tax basis moves with the property. If you get the house, you also get its basis. This means that when you sell the property you get to subtract how much you “paid” for the property from the sale price. The “how much you paid for it” part is called the “basis.”

So, if you get property from your ex in the divorce and later sell it, you will pay capital gains tax on all the appreciation before as well as after the transfer. (“Appreciation” means how much it’s gone up in value.)

That’s why, when you’re splitting up property, you need to consider the tax basis as well as the value of the property. A $100,000 bank account is worth more to you than a $100,000 stock portfolio that has a basis of $50,000. There’s no tax on the former, but when you sell the stock, you will owe tax on the $50,000 profit.

If your divorce lawyer isn’t familiar with how this all works, ask him or her to consult for an hour with a qualified tax lawyer to get the low-down.

Housing Prices Rise in Maryland

Wednesday, June 13th, 2012

Will rising housing prices bring more divorces?  Couples who were arguing over who takes on the house as a liability may now be able to argue over how to split the net sales proceeds if housing prices continue to advance.

Over the past year in Maryland, housing prices in Montgomery County increased more than those of any other county in the Washington, DC, region, according to a story in the Washington Examiner.

Housing prices rose 11.7 percent in May over the same period a year ago, and are up 5.7 percent so far this year, a Metropolitan Regional Information Systems report showed.

How to Get a Divorce

Friday, February 1st, 2008

Only the court can give you a divorce. The first step in a divorce proceeding is the preparation and filing of a Complaint. The legal document that starts the proceeding is entitled “Complaint for Absolute Divorce”. The Complaint states the grounds for divorce and the vital statistics of the parties and the marriage.

It also covers certain technical matters and asks the court for anything you might want. If you and your spouse cannot agree on something (support, custody, visitation, property division, attorney’s fees, court costs) then you must ask the court for it in the petition or the court cannot give it to you. If the list seems long, or if it includes more than you want, think of it as a wish list.

If the wording seems strange, remember that it is a formal legal document and much of the wording is required by law. Here is a Maryland Complaint for Absolute Divorce in PDF format.

 
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