Divorce Child Custody Family Law Attorney
Who Gets the House in a Divorce .
  • Who Gets the House in a Divorce

Who Gets the House in a Divorce

Who Gets the House in a Divorce can be one of the most contentious parts of a divorce, and for very good reason. When going through a divorce, it is important to understand all aspects of marital property, especially bigger things like your family home.

Deciding who gets the house in a divorce involves more than asking who wants it the most. You also have to consider mortgage responsibilities and whether you can afford the house based on your means.

Does It Matter Who is Listed on the Title?

Divorce lawyers often see controversy over who gets to stay in the family home. This is justifiable because the house is visible, valuable, and emotional. There are definitely good reasons to stand your ground, including continuity for the children, emotional attachment, and sometimes convenience. There are also bad reasons for desiring the house, including vindictiveness, ego gratification, and budgetary concerns.

Deciding who gets the house in a divorce involves more than asking who wants it the most. You also have to consider mortgage responsibilities and whether you can afford the house based on your means.

Due to credit issues or spousal pressure, many married couples have the home’s title under one person’s name. In general, California law doesn’t give the title bearer too much weight and still considers the home community property. If there is only one spouse’s name on the title, this issue should be discussed at length with your attorney because it can be a grey area under California divorce law.

For obvious reasons, California freezes the sale or mortgaging of a home during a divorce. Even if the property is under a sole person’s name, a spouse or court’s approval is required to put your marital home on the open market. Also, your spouse can also file a “lis pendens,” which is a lien saying there is a claim on the title.

The decision to stay in your home during the divorce may have implications in your temporary spousal support payments. Your spouse can be living in the house temporarily under a court ruling, but this does not prevent you from asking for the home during the divorce trial.

Contact Brett Thorsteinson at Thorsteinson Family Law for your free initial consultation. We are here to listen to your needs and help you with all of your family law matters including divorce, child custody, spousal support and more.