Who Gets (stuck with) the Timeshare in Divorce?

A lot of my mediation clients have timeshares and want to know their options when it comes to handling them in their divorce.   There are different types of timeshares, some have a real property interest, some do not.  Either way, they can be considered a community asset and/or liability and need to be addressed in the property settlement agreement.

Depending on whether you still owe money on your Timeshare (which would likely need to be addressed as a community debt), here are some popular options:

  • Keep and alternate usage and split maintenance fees.  One of you may use it in even years and one of you use in odd years and you can pay the fees just in your years or split them 50/50 all year round.
  • One keep the Timeshare and the other transfer title to the one keeping it, who will also take over the fees and costs.  There may be transfer fees, so you would need to double-check this.
  • Sell.  Many of my mediation clients tell me there usually isn’t much of a resale market for Timeshares, so they usually are not successful in finding a buyer.  Again, there may be additional fees associated with this option.
  • Give back.  You’d think you could just give it back to the Timeshare company and walk away, right?  Not so fast…even that can result in a fee.  One client told me that it would cost them $2500.00 to give theirs back.  On a personal note, we actually paid about $3000.00 to give back a Timeshare we inherited!

So, bottom line, don’t buy a Timeshare…no, seriously, you may want to do some research and contact your Timeshare company and explore options.  Then you can  discuss ideas during mediation as you both figure out the best option for how to keep enjoying (or not) your vacation ownership property.