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Criminal Conduct May Lead to Losing Marital Property

Arizona, California, Idaho, Louisiana, Texas, Nevada, New Mexico and Washington are community property states, meaning assets acquired during the marriage are typically divided equally when a couple divorces. However, this is commonly misinterpreted in that both parties must be awarded 50/50 on all community property and debts acquired during the marriage. This is not necessarily the case.

“Arizona divorce judges have the unfettered discretion to “equitably” allocate the martial estate as the judge deems warranted in any divorce case brought before him or her,” says Craig Cherney of Canterbury Law Group.

A recent case in New York is making headlines because the judge found that the husband’s criminal misconduct against the wife was sufficiently egregious to justify stripping him of all rights to the martial estate and awarding 100% of the property to the victim (wife.) “The same can happen in your case, if there is egregious or criminal conduct by one spouse against the other,” says Craig Cherney.

More About the Case at Hand

A man serving 40 years in state prison for raping his wife is not entitled to share her pension or any other marital asset in their divorce, a Brooklyn judge has determined.

State Supreme Court Justice Jeffrey Sunshine said the 2011 rape and other acts of violence and abuse by “Terrance T.” represent a rare instance where “egregious conduct” by one spouse toward another exempts the offending spouse from receiving any share of assets under equitable distribution.
Sunshine wrote that in a “civilized society,” the behavior of Terrance T. must be considered a bar under state Domestic Relations Law §236(B)(5) and §236(B)(6) to his receiving any marital assets from wife “Alice M.”

“The plaintiff, despite all she endured, compounded by the defendant’s steadfast attempt to interfere in her desire to move on, has displayed both courage and perseverance beyond what any human being should have to endure, and so is noted by this court,” Sunshine wrote in Alice M. v. Terrance T., 2015 NY Slip Op 51913(U).

To read more visit http://www.newyorklawjournal.com/id=1202746302596/Judge-Denies-Inmates-Bid-for-Marital-Assets-in-Divorce#ixzz3wsqARTwU

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