Judgments & Inheritance

CEFreemanAugust 21, 2013

Hi all!
After all these years on GW, I didn't know there was a Household Finances board. Duh!

Well, I'm hoping for some direction. Either advice or a web site, whatever.

First, I cannot afford (at this point) a Financial Planner and frankly have little trust therein.

I have a judgement against me becuase of an ugly divorce. My mother just died and is leaving my sisters and me a small inheritance.

I want to study up on how and where I could protect this from the judgement people.

Due to divorce, I have no savings or retirement anymore. I have used it to keep and rebuild my house (after a fire). I really want to keep in hand what I can. Just like most people, I guess.

Anyway, any suggestions?
Thank you for your time.

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triciae

Be careful. Under many circumstances that inheritance is subject to the judgment.

/tricia

    Bookmark   August 21, 2013 at 2:06PM
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LuAnn_in_PA

I am sorry for your loss.

Maybe the inheritance is a good thing as it will settle the judgment?

    Bookmark   August 21, 2013 at 3:39PM
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CEFreeman

>>Be careful. Under many circumstances that inheritance is subject to the judgment. Uhh, tricia, that would be why I'm starting to investigate. To "be careful."

Thank you, LuAnn. It was unexpected and gratefully rather quick.

I don't want to pay this judgement because it is a debt my now-ex owes for his business. Unfortunately, trusting wife I was, all his debts are in my name.

My plan, depending upon how much it actually is, would be to get as much as I can into retirement accounts, because judgments have a terribly difficult time accessing retirement accounts, but then, to contact the creditor to negeotiate. It's $25K, but I know they'll take far less.

However, I need to figure out if and how I can shelter anything. I have no retirements left and this could help.

Thanks for the thoughts.

    Bookmark   August 21, 2013 at 11:52PM
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emma

You should see a lawyer, don't go on what a neighbor or friend tells you.

This post was edited by EmmaR on Thu, Aug 22, 13 at 9:22

    Bookmark   August 22, 2013 at 9:19AM
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CEFreeman

Emma,
Thank you.
This isn't my first (divorce) rodeo. It is my first inheritance + judgment rodeo.

I'm not going by what anyone tells me. I want to research situations and law as I originally said here:

>>I want to study up on how and where I could protect this from the judgement people.Then, when I'm educated, I'll be contacting the appropriate person. A Financial Planner, a estate lawyer, but minimum someone with experience sheltering from judgments.

I was hoping to find a recommendation here as to where to read, etc., not what to do. I don't expect anyone here to have fussed with this, although experience is always welcome.

BTW. Sounds like you were married to my low-life's low-life brother. I'm struggling with $643 K in debt in my name -- I've been forced back to waitressing due to family circumstances when we had me take time off to care for [wait for it] his mom. I'm obsolete in my field, so here I am.

Anyway, Good job on your part.

    Bookmark   August 22, 2013 at 10:19AM
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duluthinbloomz4

You need an attorney. One who's skilled in guiding you toward a possible way around having mixed business assets (and now debts) with personal assets such as your upcoming inheritance. Since you already have a judgment against you, though, it may be too late, and the courts could declare that you made a "fraudulent transfer" to get out of meeting your obligations. An attorney would know the pitfalls in that too.

    Bookmark   August 22, 2013 at 10:27AM
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graywings123

The best time to have done something about this inheritance was before your mother died. You could have been cut out of the inheritance and had your sisters hold the money or maybe you could have had the money directed to an investment instrument that the judgment couldn't touch.

I wonder whether you could quitclaim your portion to one or both sisters. But you would probably still have the tax liability if it is taxable.

    Bookmark   August 23, 2013 at 10:08PM
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CEFreeman

Yes. I had no idea there would be an inheritence. Surprised me.

I was thinking about a quitclaim. Tax ramifications could come from the inheritence. I just wouldn't want my sisters to incur any taxes or penalties.

My first step is to contact the (darned, stupid) judgement people and see if I can bargain. Cash is always welcome, I've learned. God bless my x-POC-DH.

Thanks.

    Bookmark   August 23, 2013 at 10:15PM
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sushipup1

Generally, inheritances are not taxable to the recipient. And all taxes are paid out of the estate. That's federal, don't know if your state has different rules. Federal taxes do not kick in unless estate is more than $5.25 million dollars. If you inherited that, I think you'll be ok.

This post was edited by sushipup on Sat, Aug 24, 13 at 19:04

    Bookmark   August 24, 2013 at 12:14AM
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jkom51

Don't waste time on the Net. Find a good attorney. If it turns out you're not talking to the right one, ask for a referral to someone else who can help you. Very often those in the industry know who the "best of field" peers are.

Everything depends on the specific dates (when each event happened) and your state laws on liability.

Good luck to you going forward.

    Bookmark   August 24, 2013 at 3:38PM
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loves2read

and remember that in most states inheritance and wills are probated and that info is public information
so if your ex husband knows your mother passed away he may expect you to get an inheritance and turn you over to whoever is collecting the debts or the companies doing the debt collection can just search big database for your name and SSN

in my state--TX--inheritance is separate property until it is co-mingled---
but the problem from what you posted is that YOUR name is on the debts...
ergo--they are not shared/community property debt like a mortgage might be...

admittedly I am not an attorney--
but even if you didn't intend to acquire these debts, they are yours until discharged...
in some divorce proceedings the contentious nature of debts can mean that a judge decides who the legal party responsible for their payment is...and could have even taken the debt out of your name and put into your husband's depending on the situation...

    Bookmark   August 27, 2013 at 2:15PM
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CEFreeman

Sushipup, I didn't know it was taxed directly out of the estate. That's just fine. I'm in Maryland, but my mom lived in Michigan. I've started reading the state's legal library on inheritance.

Loves2read, as I mentioned, this isn't my first divorce rodeo. I'm familiar with all the ramifications, cans and can'ts about debt. I'm not concerned about any of that.

I know I need an attorney. Or eventually a Financial Planner.

Once again, I appreciate the time it takes to post, but I am trying to educate myself and asked for references to where I could read up on this inheritance situation.

I'm not asking for advice nor solutions here. That would be silly.

But thank you, Anyway.

    Bookmark   August 27, 2013 at 10:01PM
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azzalea

Well, of course, given the situation you need to sit down with your lawyer in your jurisdiction--not only do you need good legal advice, but you need it for the area where you live.

There may be some loopholes he can find for you. However, I have to say, MORALLY, if you have a legal debt, you SHOULD pay it. If you try to slither out from under, that's the same as stealing from the person you owe, and often (if it's a business) from the public in general, because bad debts are usually made up by charging higher prices to those who DO pay. My advice would be to use this inheritance to settle your debt, and make a fresh start, so you DON'T have to go around trying to finagle in the future. And yes, that's the advice I would give my own daughter were she in a similar situation.

    Bookmark   September 13, 2013 at 10:12PM
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CEFreeman

Well, God gave me computer issues for a reason. Let me form a more PC response.

First, I don't give a tinker's damn what you'd tell your own daughter. I'm grateful I'm not yours and feel sympathy for anyone with such a judgmental parent.

Second, I pray your daughter never, ever finds herself in the same situation or straits I've been working through. No one needs the kind of betrayal, fear, struggle, or what you'd probably smugly call "character building".

That said. I'm not trying to get out of this judgment, I'm trying to pay what I can up front, preserving the small capital I might have, while still IN COURT trying to hold my ex-POC DH responsible for the 1/2 of $643000 he's trying to weasel out of. There stands your finagler.

As I believe I might have mentioned, opinions are as common as elbows. If you have nothing constructive with which I can educate myself, please keep it to yourself. But I'm glad I could provide you with a moment of moral superiority.

I hope that wasn't too PC to make myself clear.

This post was edited by CEFreeman on Mon, Sep 16, 13 at 22:49

    Bookmark   September 16, 2013 at 10:34PM
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EATREALFOOD

CEFreeman,
Good response to that ridiculous post. It's obvious azallea did not clearly understand that you were wrongly left practically destitute by your x-SOB. Or maybe they did and everything is a B/W moral issue for them...how limiting.
You are not stealing from a person or business.(BTW businesses steal from us everyday by artistically dodging taxes).
I wish you the best and appreciate your personality.

    Bookmark   November 17, 2013 at 12:32AM
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Elraes Miller

Not knowing how old you are, and you don't have to share. But if over 55, there is free counseling from professionals through senior services. Usually city or county senior programs. They would direct you to the right source for help and save you the pain of having to find honest and inexpensive support. Your personal information would also be kept personal as they don't go through any reporting of information on paper.

There may be other resources like the above without using senior services. Check your community offerings.

State location is going to make a difference in how a lot of this is handled. Think you already know this with what was written. I believe you have every right to know what your options are. Am assuming the estate has already been settled.

In CA I had to pay the taxes personally, writing a check to the state.

I'm sorry you are going through this. The stress of 3 significant impacts on your life is emotionally beyond for anyone.

    Bookmark   November 24, 2013 at 9:22AM
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CEFreeman

Technicolor, I'm sorry I missed this post!

I am just 55, so your suggestions are very timely. I'll do some research in this area.

In the meanwhile, I've learned about inherited IRAs and RMDs. So far, no tax issues.

I appreciate your kind words, too. Thanks.

Eatrealfood, as always, thanks. Pompous poop.

    Bookmark   December 29, 2013 at 6:32PM
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colorcrazy

CEF, I am sorry that this happened to you. My ex was terrible with money, so I kinda understand. My sympathy for the loss of your mother, too.

If you are anywhere near Rockville, MD, my financial planner is one of the top 100 in the country. He charges a flat fee ($600) and is totally worth it. I don't work for him and don't get a kickback, but if you want his name, just email me.

Best wishes - you have a difficult road ahead. I wish the judges would take it into account when the woman is not the one who incurred the debt.

    Bookmark   January 20, 2014 at 12:12AM
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CEFreeman

Colocrazy, thank you for the kind thoughts.
When you file divorce papers, it asks all about the debt, but it doesn't give a squat bout unsecured debt. The papers don't say thing, giving a false sense of what's right and fairness. [snort] Ironically, the judge flat out told ex-POC that he was being the lowest form of reprehensible and an excellent, long-term con. That he (the judge), you (ex) and everyone involved know what the right thing to do would be. That he should be proud of himself enough to never come before him again, "because the court dislikes defendants such as you. Seriously dislikes. Have I made myself clear"
Vindication, but doesn't feed the cats & dogs. :)

Luckily, even the secured property is in my name. For what that's worth. I couldn't even sell, because I couldn't afford to live without it! Longer story.

I am in Bowie, so we're in the same area. I'd love your financial planner, because at some point I hope to be able to actually plan! I assume that's $600 a year if it's a flat fee?

Christine

    Bookmark   January 25, 2014 at 12:54PM
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