Dissolution of Marriage

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Annie M. Norris
Law & Ethics for Managers
December 02, 2012
Professor Timothy Griffin
South University

New Mexico is a community property state, “property that either spouse acquires from community funds is presumptively community property” (Martin, 2011, p.69). The Harris’ were married in 2001, so any property that they acquired during the course of the marriage would be considered community property with the exception of separate property. Separate property is property that is owned or acquired: “(1) prior to marriage, (2) by inheritance or bequest, (3) a gift, (4) assets traceable to other separate property, and (5) property that spouses agree is separate property” (Legal Dictionary, 2012). Since Violet Harris filed for divorce in September 2007, it is now left up to the court to dissolve the marriage and the division of their assets which are a condo, BioTech, and other assets the couple acquired during the marriage.

Max and Violet Harris purchased a condo together as a joint tenancy in New Mexico prior to marriage. A joint tenancy is defined as a “property is owned in equal shares by one or more individuals” (Bagley, 2012, p.592). The initial expenditure to acquire the condo was secured with $30,000 from Max Harris’ personal savings account also known as separate property. If Max claims the condo as “separate property then the joint tendency will be converted to a tenancy in common” (Bagley, 2012, p.592), meaning that Max and Violet would receive their individual shares /percentage of equity they have invested in the condo. However, since the funds were commingled prior to and after the marriage for mortgage payments for the condo then it is safe to assume that the property has been converted to community property. If the condo has been converted to community property then both Max and Violet would share equally in the division of the condo.

It can be determined that BioTech was founded...
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