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Saturday, March 28, 2009

Couple Buying a House and Divorcing

Q: If a man purchases a house and his wife assists him with half the capital. He registers the house under his name and pays all the expenses. Now the marriage has broken. Is the wife entitled to the amount she originally donated or half the current value of the house?
If the agreement between the husband and wife was that she is advancing a loan which he will repay, then she is entitled only to the original loan, and is not a partner in the house. If the understanding was that the house will be owned jointly be the two, then she is a partner and is entitled to half the current value of the house.
The fact that the husband had registered the house on his name only, suggests that it was a loan and not a joint ownership. But it is preferable to ascertain this from the husband. In the event of a dispute between the two, the husband will get the benefit of the doubt and it will be said that the house is solely his and he owes his ex-wife the sum of money she advanced as a loan.
And Allah knows best