Does someone have to move out of the house when there is a divorce?

It can be stressful, confusing, and difficult for spouses to continue living together during a divorce especially when there are children.  Seeing one another and knowing the relationship is over while wondering what the future holds is painful.  Divorcing couples should not jump to the conclusion one person should have to move out.  While there is no perfect answer to who should have to move out of the home, there are a number of factors to consider before one spouse decides to move out of the home.

One of the major reasons divorcing couples decide to live together during a divorce is money.  They cannot afford to pay for and maintain two homes.  The reality is many couples cannot afford two mortgages or one mortgage and one apartment at the same time.  Financially, for the time being, a divorcing couple is stuck living together for a short time.  Eventually, the spouses need to determine what their financial life will look like post-divorce.  Some find a budget-helpful.  Others start cutting expenses by paying for things they need, like rent, and cutting out things they want, such as eating out.

For those couples who own a home, they have to sort through if one of them is going to keep that home or if it will be sold.  Selling the home may be the best financial choice allowing both spouses a chance to financially start over.  The spouse who decides to keep the home should honestly evaluate the costs, time, and expenses of maintaining the home to see if doing so makes the best financial sense.

Children can be confused about a divorce.  Some parents feel living together during the divorce is best for their children to help them transition to eventually living in two homes.  For those parents who choose this route, avoiding negative comments about the other parent including family and friends, not fighting in front of the kids, and avoiding confrontation is going to help the children work their way through this life-changing event.  If parents cannot keep the children out of the conflict, thought should be given to see if alternate living arrangements are possible so the children can be removed from the fighting.

A common worry about moving out is it causes the spouse who is going to live elsewhere to lose rights and financial interest in the home.  Moving out is not abandonment and it has no effect upon those rights and financial interests.  Those rights are preserved no matter where the spouses choose to live.

Do you have questions about your family court case?  Contact experienced family law attorney Jessica L. Sterle at (218) 722-2655 to schedule a consultation.

Jessica Sterle