Divorce Laws on Mortgage Loans in Ohio

By Heather Frances J.D.

When you end your marriage in Ohio, you and your spouse have the option of reaching your own agreement about how to divide your marital property or you can have the court decide these issues for you. Either way, your divorce should decide which of you will keep the house -- but the court cannot order your lender to take your name off the loan.

Separate Vs. Marital Property

In Ohio, the court generally has authority to equitably split marital property but not separate property. Marital property includes anything acquired during the course of the marriage by either spouse and separate property includes items acquired before or during the marriage by inheritance or gift. Your house can fall into either category, depending on when and how it was acquired. If both of your names are on the mortgage loan, you are both responsible for paying the mortgage. However, if the down payment for the purchase came from your separate property, the court might decide that you have more equity in the house than does your spouse.

Property Awards

Generally, when couples purchase a mortgaged home during their marriage and the home has equity at the time of the divorce, an Ohio court allocates the equity between the spouses as part of an equitable property division. One spouse might buy out the other spouse, or the court might award you other marital assets to make up for your equity in the home if you are not keeping it. Before the court awards a mortgaged home to either of you, it may consider whether you can afford the mortgage payments, insurance payments and maintenance costs of the property, as well as your spending history if you will also be receiving spousal support.

Divorce is never easy, but we can help. Learn More

Financial Misconduct

Even if you obtain a no-fault divorce in Ohio, if your spouse engaged in financial misconduct, Ohio law permits the court to compensate you with a larger share of marital assets. For example, the court could consider it financial misconduct if your spouse attempted to conceal assets during your divorce process or spent marital funds on an adulterous affair.

The Mortgage

If the court awards the mortgaged home to one of you, it can order the spouse receiving the home to remove your name from any debt obligations by paying off the mortgage or refinancing the home in his name only. If you receive the home, the court likely will order you to remove your ex-spouse’s liability for the loan, but if you cannot qualify for refinancing, you may be forced to sell the home to satisfy the debt.

Divorce is never easy, but we can help. Learn More
Home Ownership & Divorce in Illinois

References

Related articles

Can a Divorce Decree Force a Refinance?

As a general rule, courts – even divorce courts – can't force someone to take on debt. But they can put you in a position in which you must do so to comply with another order. This might be the case if your divorce decree awards you the family home under the terms of an agreement reached with your spouse or because the court ordered it in a property division. You could find yourself in the position of having to refinance to buy your spouse's share of the property.

Texas Divorce Laws on House Disputes

Because Texas is a community property state, courts in Texas generally divide property equally following a divorce. However, the situation is more complicated when it comes to a house. Which spouse gets the house is largely dependent on when the home was purchased as well as where the mortgage payments are coming from. In some cases, the spouse who does not get the house will instead receive a greater portion of the remaining marital property, while the spouse with the house may receive more of the marital debt.

The Sale of a Residence to a Spouse in a Divorce

For many couples, one of the most heated aspects of divorce is asset division. Rather than fighting over who gets to keep the family home, some couples opt to sell the house and split the proceeds. If your spouse has a deep-seated emotional attachment to the property, but you want to sell the home, you may agree to let your spouse buy out your interest in the property. You benefit from the cash proceeds, while your former spouse benefits by being permitted to keep the property.

Get Divorced Online

Related articles

Can a Spouse Get Half of the House in a Divorce in Connecticut?

Your home may be the most valuable asset you and your spouse own, so it will be important for you to claim your ...

Can You Get Half of the Value of a House in a Divorce if Your Name Is Not on the Title?

When you divorce, the court has authority to divide much of the property owned by you and your spouse. If you and your ...

Ohio Divorce Law on a House in a Spouse's Name

In Ohio, marital property is subject to equitable distribution in divorce cases. For many couples, the family home is ...

The Division of the House in a Divorce

When you're divorcing, the marital home can seem a lot like a pet elephant. You might love it, but it will cost a lot ...

Browse by category
Ready to Begin? GET STARTED