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Wife sued for selling apartment to mother

(Global Times)

09:33, June 08, 2013

A district court has ruled that a soon-to-be-divorced woman did not have the right to sell her jointly owned apartment behind her disabled husband's back, Songjiang District People's Court said Friday.

The husband, surnamed Li, sued his wife after she sold their apartment to her mother without his knowledge, according to a court press release. Ma's mother, surnamed Zhang, was also named as a defendant in the lawsuit.

Ma signed a property transfer contract with her mother after filing for divorce with Li, who had suffered an injury that left him disabled, the court said. Ma's mother agreed to pay 200,000 yuan ($32,598) for the apartment, but never actually paid Ma the money.

The court later ruled that the sole purpose of the contract was to allow Ma to put the apartment under her mother's name.

Li suspected that Ma sold the property to prevent him from claiming it in their pending divorce, the court said.

In court, he argued that the couple bought the 150,000-yuan apartment with 80,000 yuan from Zhang, 20,000 yuan of their own savings and a 50,000-yuan mortgage, which the couple paid down together.

Although the apartment was registered solely under Ma's name, the court determined that it belonged to both spouses because they bought it during their marriage.

The court ruled that Ma's contract with her mother was invalid because it violated Li's legal rights as a property owner.

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