Question #311:My brother filed for divorce in NY from his wife and since then my Dad passed away and myself and my siblings have inherited my Dad’s home. My brother wants to buy us out and live in the house. Can his wife make a claim on the house once it’s in my brother’s name? Should us siblings wait till his divorce is final and then sell him the house?

Your brother’s portion of the inheritance, including his share of the house, if kept in his name only andseparate and apart from his commingled funds, are NOT “Marital Property” and his wife would have no claim to them.
However, as you rightly are concerned, if he uses money he earned during the marriage, or commingled funds to buy you and the remaining siblings out, that portion of the purchase price IS Marital Property and the wife would have a claim to that portion.

Best thing, as you suggest, is to wait until the divorce is final, there is an Order of divorce signed by the judge and the Order is filed with the County Clerk.

Good Luck!

Leonard Weiner, Esq.
Divorce Solutions

Question #122:My Husband was married for ten years prior to meeting me. He got the divorce and we got married. My husband is 17 years older than I am. We have a 10 month old child together. I am worried if we buy a house and God forbid my husband dies before I do, does his ex-wife have any legal rights to the property that we acquire? We live in NYC.

Assuming that the divorce which your husband received 10 years ago was valid, any asset which he acquired after that time should be separate property and not marital property (of the first marriage). There should also have been a separation agreement in which one of the provisions spells out the division of all property and the right of each individual to maintain separate property from that point on.
If you have any further questions, please call may at 212-370-1660 to discuss the matter at greater length.

Leonard M. Weiner, Esq./Divorce Solutions