New York, NY- Divorces can get ugly, as each party will say and do whatever they can, even lie, to get what they want out of their divorce settlement. Child custody and the family home are often the springboards for a contentious divorce.
Such is the case of an Australian woman who tried to keep her Victoria house by telling property valuer, her attorney and estranged husband that her house was haunted by a ghost, according to Adelaide Now. Her husband wanted to sell the home.
According to the Australian paper, the woman wrote to the property valuer telling then she believed a ghost was present in the home and inquiring what the home would be valued at. If the price was kept at $750,000 she would be able to afford keeping it
The woman also said her nephew had seen the ghost a few years ago and that she “felt something.” But the story didn’t stop with the property assessor, the women repeated the story in court, but said the ghost was confined to her bedroom.
She also raised other concerns with the house, stating the showers leaked and the home was infested with slugs and termites, and a freight train passed near the house day and night, Adelaide Now reported.
The Federal Magistrate Judge remained unconvinced saying, “”I found this account of the alleged haunting to be unbelievable and I am satisfied that the claim was fabricated for an ulterior purpose, namely, as an attempt to influence the valuer to return a low valuation of the former matrimonial home,” according to Adelaide Now.
The court decided the woman could keep the home, but she will have to pay her estranged spouse $189,000.
This is strange story and likely the first time someone has used the “my house is haunted” excuse to try and keep their marital home, but other couples will tolerate some unusual living arrangements in order to keep their spouse from getting the house.
In 2007, an estranged couple living in New York both loved their three-story row house so much they just built a wall through the second story.
Chana and Simon Taub were trying to end their 20 year marriage, but when they both refused to move out of the house, a judge ordered them to build a wall between the second story dining room and kitchen, the Associated Press reported.
Mr. Taub lived on the first floor with the living room and kept the dining room on the second floor. Mrs. Taub got the third floor and the kitchen on kitchen on the second floor.
This was an infamous case in Brooklyn that earned the moniker “War of the Roses,” named after the film of the same name starring Michael Douglas and Kathleen Turner.
These are just two of the unusual divorce cases, it is almost certain that divorce attorneys are used to encountering unusual or ridiculous requests and demands. Divorces can also drive one estranged spouses to act out, sometimes in unlawful ways.