For the majority of couples going through a divorce, the marital home is one of the biggest assets. The common question is whether moving out means abandoning the home and any rights to it. There seems to be a common myth in divorce situations regarding marital property and what you can and cannot do with it when going through a divorce. People often believe that if you leave a piece of property to keep the peace with your spouse, you have actually given up your rights to the property or real estate in this case.
Rights to the Home
So, if you separate and move out of the marital home before the divorce, then you have abandoned the home and given up all of your rights to the home? This is not at all true.
A home purchased during the marriage is considered marital property in a Florida divorce. Some homes have no value; many in this economy have equity. Regardless of its financial state, the property has to be divided. Moving out does not have any bearing on you getting a portion of the equity of the home if it were to be sold. If the home is not going to be sold, but kept by the other party, moving out does not impact your ability to be bought out from your portion of the equity.
Rights to the Children
But what about children? Does moving out of a marital home mean that I am giving up my rights to see my children? The answer remains no. While it can be difficult to quickly sort out a time-sharing schedule as it relates to children, in the long term the Court recognizes that it can be difficult for people who no longer wish to be in a relationship with each other. Physical separation is a necessary part of divorce. Sometimes this is done as a safety issue, and the Courts are well aware that this is the case.
As with most issues in a divorce, calm and reasonable communication is key. An experienced divorce attorney is generally the best way to achieve such communication. If you wish to speak with an attorney regarding a divorce, separation, or how these laws might play out with your personal situation, please give us a call and set up a consultation.