Receivers in a Divorce Case

A receiver takes possession and control of assets specified in the court order that appointments him or her, answerable directly to the court. While receivers are rare in divorce proceedings, one could be appointed under outrageous circumstances to preserve joint property at risk of being depleted, disposed of or transferred beyond the power of the court.

The threatened property might be the business accounts receivable. Karen asked the court to order the appointment of a receiver when Paul appeared to be out of control. The property under the receiver’s control could be the entire business, in which case the receiver would try to keep employees in place and conduct business as usual to the extent possible.

This is an extraordinary remedy and drastic remedy. The court must find compelling reasons to take control of a person’s property away from him or her. Knowing that the court has the power to order a receiver, or make other powerful orders when circumstances warrant, helps considerably in keeping court proceedings civilized. Remember that this may apply to you, not just your “unreasonable” spouse.