How to Protect Yourself if Forced to Leave During a Pending Divorce

Being forced to leave the marital home during a divorce and pending real estate settlement is often traumatic. Some states offer protection for those in the midst of the division of marital real property. In those states, unless the court has reason to believe that someone else in the home is in danger, no one can force you to leave the home. However, the refusal of one party to leave during a pending divorce often creates problems for the spouse and other household members, regardless of who files for the divorce.

Your Spouse Cannot Force You to Leave

Ending a marriage is rarely pleasant. The division of marital property forces both parties to see the end to that part of their lives. Although you are divorcing, neither spouse has the right to ask the other to leave, especially when both names are on the deed to the property. By leaving the home, you could possibly lose important records that may impact divorce proceedings, especially in community property states. Your records could prove when you purchased an asset, whether before or during the marriage or after the divorce filing.

In the past, divorcing couples hesitated to leave the marital home during a pending real estate settlement and divorce. The person leaving—often the wife—could not collect alimony. Fortunately, most states no longer allow this. Many people choose to remain in the marital home throughout the divorce and division of real estate for financial reasons. Couples commonly remain in the marital home until the assignment of ownership is complete to lessen the trauma and uncertainty of divorce on their children.

Seek legal advice if your spouse tries to force you to leave your home. Know your rights. The laws regarding real estate remain in effect until the distribution of the final divorce assets. A reputable divorce attorney will protect your interests.

The Best Way to Negotiate Divorce and Asset Distribution

The best way to negotiate divorce and asset distribution requires that a couple negotiate calmly. Divorce is often contentious. A case proceeds more smoothly when the couple avoids anger and accusations. One-sided or contested divorces often result in the other party acting hateful, bitter, and spiteful. They refuse to negotiate and insist on taking everything without compromise. This causes a long, drawn-out divorce without the distribution of assets. For a completely broken marriage, things move along more quickly if you behave calmly and respectfully to one another.

Work with a Mediator

Once you decide to divorce, a mediator can help you find mutually agreeable terms for dividing marital assets. You must complete an asset valuation before determining distribution. While your lawyer could handle this part of your divorce, a mediator simplifies the process. The parties all meet in one place, rather than lawyers for both sides bouncing back and forth with counter offers. Mediators also charge less than divorce lawyers. They generally handle much of the preliminary negotiation before filing the divorce and valuing assets.

Always seek a divorce lawyer’s advice once you decide to divorce. You and your spouse must determine which assets you owned before the marriage, and those owned prior to the divorce. In a community property state, most of this is irrelevant. The court considers all marital property to be owned equally by both. In other states, the court distributes all assets equitably—though not always equally. The court may base distribution on the net worth of each party and their ability to support themselves after divorce. In cases involving children, some states require divorcing parents to attend counseling before they can file. Both parties must then think of their children’s well-being when coming to agreement regarding the valuation and division of assets.

Legal-Yogi Can Help

Legal-Yogi helps you find the right divorce attorney for your needs. Our widespread network of professionals extends throughout the country. Simply fill out the contact form on our website to speak with an expert. They’ll assess your needs and refer you to the most appropriate divorce attorneys in your area.

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