For some married couples, timeshares are a vacation paradise and a romantic home away from home. For many others, however, timeshares represent a misguided purchase that is notoriously difficult to sell. Typically, a timeshare allows multiple people to own the same property and utilize it for established periods of time during the year. While the idea is sound, the reality is a little less grand. In fact, most owners complain about the strict usage schedules and excessive taxes.
Unfortunately, when spouses decide to divorce, the timeshare becomes part of their marital estate. In other words, it’s time to decide if you want to share it, sell it, or have one spouse outright own it.
If both spouses have an amicable relationship, they might be able to share the property and split the usage schedule. By sharing the timeshare, both spouses can take advantage of inexpensive vacation opportunities. Also, they aren’t forced to cut their losses by trying to sell the timeshare on the open market. Again, this option is only appropriate for former spouses who are capable of cordial communication and mutual respect. In fact, most attorneys discourage this option because of the long-term pressure it places on both spouses. If you’re interested in splitting the timeshare, your lawyer can help you include it in the divorce settlement agreement.
The following questions must be considered:
- Who should receive the timeshare bills?
- How should you split the maintenance fee?
- What happens if one party doesn’t make the required payments?
- How will the usage schedule be divided?
- What if one spouse wants to use the points at another resort?
It’s important to include this information in your divorce settlement agreement. You also need to set strict consequences if one party consistently fails to make timely payments. After all, it’s not fair for one former spouse to completely carry the cost of the timeshare.
This is the option chosen by most divorcing spouses. It’s difficult to be committed to one vacation location, particularly when it involves expensive maintenance fees. Unfortunately, a timeshare is a depreciating asset, which means that its value has likely gone down since your initial purchase. For this reason, it’s preferable to complete the sale prior to your divorce being finalized so you can split any profits and costs.
This option is applicable when one spouse is attached to the timeshare and doesn’t want to sell it. Both legal teams can help their clients come to a mutually beneficial arrangement that allows one party to keep the timeshare. Of course, because the timeshare is considered a shared asset, the property and any relevant debts need to be appraised before an agreement can be made. Your divorce settlement agreement can include terms about debt payment, refinancing options, and liability removal.
Pursue Legal Representation
When it comes to dividing marital assets and property, you’re going to need an attorney with experienced litigation skills and brilliant negotiation tactics. At Wakenight & Associates, our Illinois divorce lawyers are dedicated to helping our clients pursue fair and advantageous divorce settlement agreements.
Call Wakenight & Associates, P.C. to schedule your free consultation. We have offices conveniently located in Oak Park, Mokena, Joliet, and Mokena.