Divorce property division can be heated in Maryland and elsewhere

Due to the headlines this bizarre case is making, Maryland readers may be familiar with a case of a New York man allegedly faking his own drowning to cash in on his life insurance policy. The situation has now morphed into what could prove to be a contentious property division case as well. Maryland residents contemplating divorce can look to this as a case of what not to do.

The man's wife initiated divorce proceedings after she supposedly discovered emails between her husband and his son setting out the apparent scam. The man reportedly filed his own divorce papers in response, citing "irreconcilable differences," although his divorce attorney allegedly stated that it came down to money issues. According to him, the man doesn't want his wife to be able to cash in on severance checks he expects to receive. And it seems like that may be the least of the property division disputes that could arise between the two now.

Apparently there are other assets that may now be up for grabs in this divorce. They include the couple's home, purportedly worth $550,000 and the husband's retirement account. Supposedly, the home had formerly been in only the wife's name, since it came into the 12-year marriage with her. A prenuptial agreement which protected her property has evidently expired, and the husband had talked her into signing over half of the home to him. Additionally, it appears the man spent a significant amount of money grained through a refinance. It remains to be seen what effect the allegations of a faked drowning will have on the now pending matrimonial proceedings.

While faking a death with not only call into question an individual's rationale, it can also be illegal. This man has been arrested and is facing charges, the results of which are sure to impact the divorce proceedings. If a Maryland individual is contemplating filing for divorce, speaking with experience legal counsel is a logical method of finding out more information regarding protecting assets and other aspects of a couple parting ways.

Source: New York Post, "Long Island man charged with faking own drowning to cash in on life insurance, has filed for divorce to keep wife from collecting severance checks," Kieran Crowley, Aug. 18, 2012