What If You Disagree on An Appraisal?
Property division is a crucial aspect of the divorce process in New Jersey, as in many other jurisdictions. When a divorcing couple cannot agree on the appraisal of their home, it can complicate the proceedings and prolong the resolution of their divorce.
Let’s delve into what happens when a divorcing couple in New Jersey cannot agree on their home’s appraisal.
Divorce and Home Appraisal
During a divorce, the division of assets, including the marital home, is typically determined based on the principle of equitable distribution. This means that the court aims to divide the couple’s property fairly, considering various factors such as the duration of the marriage, each spouse’s financial circumstances, and contributions to the acquisition and maintenance of the property.
A professional appraisal is usually sought to determine the value of the home. However, if the divorcing couple cannot agree on the appraised value, they may take several routes to resolve the dispute.
Firstly, the couple may attempt to negotiate a compromise outside of court. They can hire separate appraisers and compare their findings to identify any discrepancies. If there is a significant difference in the appraisals, they may seek the opinion of a neutral third-party appraiser to provide an unbiased assessment.
Alternatively, the couple may pursue mediation or collaborative divorce, working with a neutral mediator or a team of professionals, including appraisers and attorneys, to reach a mutually acceptable resolution.
These processes encourage open communication and cooperation, allowing the couple to find a middle ground considering both perspectives.
Going To Court
The court may need to intervene if negotiation and alternative dispute resolution methods fail to produce an agreement. In New Jersey, the court can order an independent appraisal of the home to determine its value. The judge may appoint a court-appointed appraiser or rely on the opinions of both parties’ appraisers to assess the property’s worth.
It is important to note that the court-appointed appraiser’s fees are generally split between the divorcing couple or assigned to one spouse, depending on the case’s specific circumstances. The appraiser will thoroughly analyze the property, considering factors such as its location, condition, size, and comparable sales in the area.
Once the court has obtained the home appraisal report, it will use this information and other relevant factors to decide the division of the marital home. The judge’s ruling may not necessarily align with either party’s desired outcome as the court strives to achieve a fair and equitable distribution of assets.
Still in Disagreement On The Home Appraisal?
In some cases, if the divorcing couple still disagrees with the court’s decision, they may have the option to appeal the ruling. However, appeals are generally granted only when significant legal errors or substantial evidence of unfairness exist.
When a divorcing couple in New Jersey cannot agree on the appraisal of their home, it can complicate the property division process. Therefore, divorcing couples need to understand the options available and seek legal guidance to navigate this challenging aspect of divorce.
To learn more about divorce and home appraisal, contact Dalena & Bosch. We can help you navigate the entire process to get your desired outcome.