SeparatevsMarital Property


Thank you for this service.

  • Spouse had home then married me. Quit Claim Deed 2 months into marriage to both of us. Mortgage was 90,000. We paid off mortgage over next 2 years and used $60k of his money that came from sell of stock. The stock was his in separate acct but 9 months into marriage he put it in joint brokerage acct. I understand that the house is considered gift to marriage. Is the stock he put in NOT marital but separate? I hear there was a precedent that changed the McLain case due to length of marriage being only 6 month and judge gave the separate money back. We were married 5 years. Plus, we used other money to pay on house over the 2 years. Is this a 50/50 or could all the separate stock money go back? What is the case name that overruled McLain regarding separate money into marital home? We also took out a loan on the house of $30k to pay taxes for the year we paid off the house.

** Car was titled to spouse by other spouse who owned before date of marriage. From what I have read, this is marital property since it was a gift. Is this correct?

Last, how much does it range it cost to have a QDRO done? I hear it is 3k. Is this true?
Than k you in advance!


If he used the stock to pay down the debt on the marital home, that too could be considered a gift to the marriage, depending on the judge’s view of the facts and application of the law.

Case law research is beyond the scope of this forum.

The car is not marital property, it belongs to the spouse to whom it was gifted, and is separate property as it was gifted prior to the marriage.

QDROs can cost 3k, depending on the complexity.


Thank you, Erin for all your answers. Excuse me for not being clear – the car was bought before marriage by spouse. After DOM he titled the car to me and I sold my car. He said we did not need 5 cars and he already had 4. We then spent the next 9 months paying if off. Is this my car now or is it marital property? Thank you for your time. And, btw, are you familiar with the case that overruled McLean regarding marital and separate property? Something about a couple who was married less than 6 months. During that time one spouse paid off the house. The judge did not consider that a marital split. If so, will you please tell me the names and I will look it up? My spouse is trying to use that as a means to get out of me getting 1/2 or some of the house from Quit Claim Deed.


I see, yes, the car is marital property.
I do not know the case name off the top of my head, and case law research is beyond the scope of this forum.


OP, If you go to your favorite search engine, you can run a search using the words “McLean North Carolina Separate Property”, and it will bring up the case you are referring to. It’s on . Don’t use the " " when you type in the search words, just the words.

*I am not a lawyer, just someone who likes to use search engines to find stuff like this. :slight_smile: