Balogh v. BaloghAnnotate this Case
During their marriage, Ray and Sandra signed three documents establishing the division and distribution of their martial partnership property upon divorce. The documents included a handwritten document, a memorandum of understanding (MOU) and a quitclaim deed. Sandra subsequently filed a complaint for divorce. Nothwithstanding the documents, the family court awarded Ray and Sandra each one-half interest in the property, concluding that the quitclaim deed was unenforceable because they were unconscionable and that all three documents were unenforceable because Ray acted under duress and coercion when he signed them. The Intermediate Court of Appeals (ICA) vacated in part the family court’s divorce decree, concluding that the quitclaim deed was not unconscionable and that Ray executed both the quitclaim deed and the MOU voluntarily. The Supreme Court vacated the judgment of the ICA and vacated the family court’s divorce decree, holding (1) the quitclaim deed did not affect the disposition of the parties’ marital partnership property upon divorce, and therefore, the ICA erred in concluding that the quitclaim deed was an enforceable separation agreement; and (2) the MOU was enforceable because it was not unconscionable and was entered into voluntarily. Remanded.