Do I have any rights to property or compensation if we were never married? 15 Answers as of June 23, 2011

My girlfriend of fifteen years and I are splitting up. I have paid 50% of the house and bills but my name is not on it. Do I have any rights to property or compensation?

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Law Office of Robert L. Fiedler
Law Office of Robert L. Fiedler | Robert L Fiedler
You may have rights but that would have to be determined by agreement or by bringing an action in which you claim that you have certain financial claims against the property.
Answer Applies to: Connecticut
Replied: 6/23/2011
Edwin Fahlen Attorney at Law
Edwin Fahlen Attorney at Law | Edwin Fahlen
This is a matter of contract law. If there was an agreement that you both owned the property then we can file a law suit to quiet the title into both of your names, and have the property sold and the proceeds divided accordingly. You will not have the benefit of the California Family Code so you must proceed under the principal of contract and perhaps equity laws. We can help you with this.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 6/23/2011
Pontrello Law
Pontrello Law | William Pontrello
If you made a contract in writing that in the event of breaking up you would get reimbursed. sounds like a gift to me.
Answer Applies to: Florida
Replied: 6/22/2011
Seattle Divorce Services
Seattle Divorce Services | Michael V. Fancher
Under Washington law you may be able to establish that a marriage like relationship existed creating community property. You should consult with an attorney in your area as to your specific situation.
Answer Applies to: Washington
Replied: 6/22/2011
John E. Kirchner, Attorney at Law
John E. Kirchner, Attorney at Law | John Kirchner
Maybe, maybe not. You won't have any rights simply because you and the girlfriend lived together, but a court can enforce any agreements or general understandings that may exist. You need to consult a Florida attorney to assess the specific facts and history of your relationship in connection with Florida law.
Answer Applies to: Colorado
Replied: 6/21/2011
    Diefer Law Group, P.C.
    Diefer Law Group, P.C. | Abel Fernandez
    Depending on where you live. In California, we do not have common law marriages. So, it is harder for you to make any claims over property not in your name. This might be different in other states so consult with an attorney.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 6/21/2011
    Law Office of James Lentz
    Law Office of James Lentz | James Lentz
    This issue is way too complicated to be addressed here. You need to see a domestic relations attorney in Florida, now.
    Answer Applies to: Ohio
    Replied: 6/21/2011
    Law Office of Michael W. Bugni
    Law Office of Michael W. Bugni | Jay W. Neff
    Maybe. It is going to depend on the laws in your particular state. In Washington (my state), if a couple meets certain criteria, then, the court will consider them to be in what is called a "meretricious relationship." In Washington, that finding gives both parties certain rights as to property and debt division. Whether Florida has a similar system, I could not say.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 6/21/2011
    Reeves Law Firm, P.C.
    Reeves Law Firm, P.C. | Roy L. Reeves
    Yes, but this is very complicated. You need to consult a lawyer and consider establishing a common law marriage or in the alternative, you can claim rights as a Co-Tennant In common.
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 6/21/2011
    Warner Center Law Offices of Donald F. Conviser
    Warner Center Law Offices of Donald F. Conviser | Donald F. Conviser
    If the house and your relationship was in California, you may or may not have rights relating to the house depending upon whether you had an agreement with your former girlfriend, whether written, oral or implied, in accordance with the holding in Marvin vs. Marvin and its progeny. Had you been married to her, you would have had community property rights in the house or a portion of it, but there is no community property in a nonmarital relationship. Marvin cases are litigated in the Civil Courts, not the Family Law Courts, and Attorney's Fee awards are not available in Marvin cases. An agreement might or might not be implied, based on facts specific to your relationship with your girlfriend. You should consult with a knowledgable Family Law Attorney with experience in Marvin cases, regarding your specific situation.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 6/21/2011
    Law Office of Karen A. Clark, L.L.C.
    Law Office of Karen A. Clark, L.L.C. | Karen A. Clark
    Having one's name on the title is not the determinative factor. You should discuss this matter with an attorney as soon as possible.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 6/21/2011
    Beaulier Law Office
    Beaulier Law Office | Maury Beaulier
    No. Palimony is expressly excluded from Minnesota Statutes. You may have a right to property only if you can prove there was an agreement to be joint owners of the property in question and to share in its value.
    Answer Applies to: Minnesota
    Replied: 6/21/2011
    Law Office Of Jody A. Miller
    Law Office Of Jody A. Miller | Jody A. Miller
    The law on this differs in every state. In Georgia you would probably not have any rights. But you need to consult with an attorney in your state regarding the specifics of your situation.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 6/21/2011
    Ashman Law Office
    Ashman Law Office | Glen Edward Ashman
    Possibly. In my state (Georgia) the answer is generally no. In Florida, and you need to get a lawyer ASAP, the answer is "maybe." Agreements between unmarried parties may be enforced provided there is valid and lawful consideration apart from any express or implied agreement regarding sexual relations. See Stevens v. Muse, 562 So.2d 852, 853 (Fla. 4th DCA 1990) (holding agreements between unmarried cohabitants were not violative of public policy) See also Poe v. Levy's Estate, 411 So.2d 253, 256 (Fla. 4th DCA 1982) ("a cause of action based on an express contract or for construction of a trust is enforceable regardless of the fact that the parties may be cohabiting illicitly as long as it is clear that there was valid, lawful consideration"). An oral agreement between cohabiting parties, if proved, is enforceable. Crossen v. Feldman, 673 So.2d 903 (Fla. 2d DCA 1996).
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 6/21/2011
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