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Who Has to Leave the House in a Divorce?

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Divorces can be emotionally-charged, difficult affairs. If the parties have been together for a long time, share a home, and share children, numerous complexities and disagreements can arise throughout the process. One question we often receive from clients involves the parties’ living situation while the divorce is pending: Does one spouse need to move out? How should they decide who leaves? Read on to learn about who can and who should stay in the marital home during a Texas divorce, and contact an experienced Houston divorce and family law attorney with any additional questions or for help with a Texas family law matter.

No one is required to move out during a Texas divorce

Despite common belief, neither spouse actually needs to move out during the divorce process. If both spouses are on the lease or mortgage, then both spouses continue to have a legal right to stay in the home. Until the property is distributed in the final divorce order, both parties have a right to be there.

Whether one party should choose to move out before the divorce is finalized, however, should be the subject of careful consideration and discussion. Speak with your attorney about the circumstances of your Texas divorce. One of the most immediate considerations is whether you and your spouse are capable of cohabitating. Divorces can be very emotionally charged, and if you and your spouse cannot be amicable around one another, then it may be healthier for you and for your children for someone to move out sooner rather than later.

Considerations for who should move out

A variety of financial and familial concerns come into play when determining whether either spouse should move out and, if so, who should move. Discuss your circumstances with your Texas divorce attorney to evaluate whether moving out is the right step for you or your spouse to take.

Financially, the parties will want to consider which party can afford to move out, and which party can afford to keep paying for the house. Whoever moves out will need to find new lodgings, and they may still remain responsible for certain expenses at the marital home. The parties should consider whether the home will be subject to refinance during the divorce, and who can afford to refinance. A divorce settlement may, for example, refinance a joint mortgage into one name and release mortgage responsibility from the other party. If one party has stronger credit, then both parties may benefit from putting the house in their name. There are a variety of financial considerations that may come into play, including how the home generally fits into the entire set of community assets and debts.

The parties should also consider the best interests of any shared children. The parties should consider the age of the children, where they are in school, and where the children will benefit from living. If the party who moves intends to have the children live in the new home either part-time or full-time, the new dwelling must be sufficient to accommodate the kids.

These are just a few of the considerations that should come into play in determining who should move out after a divorce. Speak with a knowledgeable and understanding Texas divorce attorney to evaluate your options and determine the best step for you and your family.

If you’re facing property division, child support, divorce, or other family law issues in Texas, get legal help protecting your rights by contacting the seasoned, reliable, and talented Houston family law attorney Maria S. Lowry at 713-850-8859.

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