Taipei, May 16 (CNA) A court ruled Wednesday against a French national's request to transfer ownership of an apartment that he paid for from his ex-father-in-law to him after his marriage to a Taiwanese woman turned sour, on the grounds that the property was a "gift."
According to the verdict from the Taipei District Court, Moskovic Jacques got engaged to Chao Chun-yi, 37 years his junior, in 2006.
Jacques then purchased an apartment for NT$26 million (US$881,355.9) in Taipei's Xinyi District in February the following year before the couple got married. The property was put under the name of Chao's father, it said.
The verdict said that Jacques filed for divorce in 2011 and filed another lawsuit requesting ownership of the property.
Jacques argued that he purchased the property only because he was getting married in Taiwan. He said he was worried that he would have problems getting a loan as a foreigner and because Chao did not have a job, he therefore put the house under her father's name, the verdict said.
The verdict added that Jacques contended he paid the down payment on the property, as well as the interest, and has given Chao some NT$4 million to pay the monthly mortgage fees.
He added that he also gave Chao NT$38 million to invest in the stock market and real estate, it added.
The woman's father, however, argued that Jacques promised to provide for all of Chao's needs and contended that the money was a gift. He further said that Jacques had never mentioned that registering the property in his name was an act of borrowing.
The court ruled that the apartment was a gift from Jacques because he was unable to provide evidence to prove he was only borrowing his ex-in-law's name to register the property.
The court chose to believe Chao's argument that Jacques gave her the property to convince her father that he would give her a "wealthy life," the verdict added.
The case can be appealed.
(By Tsai Pei-chih and Jamie Wang)