How to be removed from a mortgage after a divorce?

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How to be removed from a mortgage after a divorce?

I was divorced 9 years ago and my ex never removed me from the mortgage. He now will be paying me for my share of the marital home. He is not refinancing to pay me; he has the cash. Now he is refusing to remove me from the mortgage. What can I do?

Asked on March 11, 2019 under Family Law, New Jersey

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

If the divorce settlement or decree required him to remove you, you can enforce those documents and force him to refinance so as to remove you. The way you enforce a settlement (an agreement you and your ex voluntarily entered into) is different from you enforce a court decree or order (an order made by the judge in your case), so you are advised to retain a family law attorney to help you, but the important thing is, if at the end of your divorce, he was required to take you off the mortgage, you can force him to do that.
If the divorce, however, did not end with a settlent or order requiring him to remove you, you cannot force him to take you off: he is only required to do what he agreed or what a court ordered him to do.
And you cannot force the mortgagee (the lender) to remove you from the mortgage, since the lender was not a part of your marriage or a party to you divorce case, and is not affected by your divorce. The lender can hold you to the agreement (mortgage) you signed, which is a contract. The only way to get out of the mortgage is to have your ex refinance or pay off the mortgage, and he is only required to do that if there was a settlement or decree/order requiring him to do so.


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