“Who gets to keep the house after divorce?” is one of the most common questions that arise during property division in divorce. A house is one of the most expensive assets that most married couples purchase and when the union ends in divorce, one or both parties may wish to retain the property. Learn about how courts decide who receives the home so you are prepared for the outcome by speaking with an expert family law attorney – connect for free!
You Should Keep the House After Divorce!
Marital property is property acquired during a marriage. If a home falls into this category, property laws of the state dictate who owns the property after a divorce. Most states are common law property states in which property purchased by one party and put only in the name of that individual is considered to be owned solely by that person. If the property is purchased by both spouses or the names of both parties are listed on the deed, each spouse owns a 50 percent interest.
The couple may enter a premarital agreement that explains how marital property should be distributed upon divorce. Otherwise, a court will determine how to divide marital property in a common law property state. The court bases its decision on personal circumstances of the couple. If the spouses have children, the marital home is usually awarded to the parent who will do the majority of the childrearing. Winning a custody battle will help you keep the house after divorce. This is why it is essential to work with a family law attorney that knows how to fight for your rights in every aspect of a family law matter.
Each State Decides Who Gets to Keep the House After Divorce Differently
The handful of states with community property laws consider all assets acquired during a marriage community property, with each spouse having 50 percent ownership. If the home was acquired by one party before the marriage, it is owned only by that person and is considered separate property. If the home is community property, one spouse cannot alienate the other from his or her 50 percent ownership.
If a couple residing in a community property state divorces, the home and other community property are evenly divided. Since dividing a home in half is not feasible, the court often awards the house to one spouse. The other spouse is awarded other assets whose value equals the 50 percent ownership of the home. Couples residing in community property states are also permitted to enter premarital agreements that stipulate the division of marital property upon divorce.
When a home is considered community or marital property in divorce, neither spouse has the legal right to make the other leave but one spouse may request this. However, it may be illegal to lock out another spouse unless the situation involves domestic violence. A divorce attorney can help spouses determine whether the home is considered marital or nonmarital property and how it will be handled during divorce. Only an experienced divorce attorney can give you the right advice for your particular situation – connect with an expert divorce attorney for free today!