Ask A Lawyer: Is There a Time Period to Protest New Deeds?

Question:

My father owned property prior to his second marriage which began 10 years ago. Three months ago, his 2nd wife told him that if he wanted to save their marriage, he would put her name on the deed. He’s a sucker. He also signed for a new car for her.

She filed for divorce approximately 2 months after the deed and 1 week after getting the car.  Is there any sort of time period in which the new deed can be protested?

 

Answer:

In Missouri your father could attempt to make a case for fraud in civil (not family) court.  Further, in the divorce action she will argue that the transfer was a gift from him to her.  He will need to show by more than "self serving testimony" that the conveyance was for a purpose other than a gift.  A common argument is that the conveyance was for estate planning purposes only.  Note that in Missouri, the title does not control the determination of each parties interest in the property and the court will look to the "source of funds" to acquire the property when determining each parties interest.

 

Spencer E. Williams is the Team Leader over St Louis, St Charles, Indianapolis and Arnold (Jefferson County, MO) offices of Cordell & Cordell, P.C. where he practices exclusively in the area of domestic relations. Mr. Williams has tried numerous cases dealing with complex custody issues, maintenance, business assets and personal asset division. 

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