Can We Still Live Together While We're
Aug. 9, 2022
Issues in domestic relationships often involve heightened emotions and must be handled carefully. When considering a divorce or during marital dissolution proceedings, you may be wondering whether to keep living together with your soon-to-be ex-spouse. A skilled Texas family law attorney can explore your options regarding living arrangements when divorcing and the impact of your decision on other divorce issues.
Robin Scott has devoted her career to providing outstanding legal services and reliable advocacy to individuals and families in complex divorce matters involving living arrangements. She's available to discuss the living options that are available to you and enlighten you about how this might affect property division and child custody. Robin Scott Law Firm, PLLC is proud to serve clients across Spring, Texas, and the surrounding areas of Harris, Montgomery, and Fort Bend counties.
Considerations in Deciding Living Arrangements
For many estranged couples, it can be difficult to keep living together during the divorce process. Conversely, you may not be willing to move out of the marital home, a place in which you have settled and established an emotional connection with your loved ones. Here are some important considerations to determine the best living arrangements during the divorce process:
An important factor to consider when deciding the best living arrangement is your safety. Are you safe in the house? Does your estranged partner have a history of domestic violence or abuse? To secure your safety from an abusive partner, you should consider moving out of the home. Alternatively, you may petition the Texas court for a protective order instructing the abusive partner to vacate the house and stay away from you and your kids.
In most divorce cases, the parent with physical custody of the children gets to live in the marital home. Since children often find it difficult to transition to a new environment, Texas courts presume that maintaining the existing living arrangement will be in the children's best interest. Regardless, the parent who moves out of the marital home will establish a visitation schedule (parenting time). This way, they can also spend adequate time with their kids.
Another factor to consider when deciding on the best living arrangement is your comfort. Moving out of the marital home during the divorce process can help mitigate hostilities and conflicts between divorcing spouses. For improved comfort and to prevent mental health issues, you can vacate the marital home when getting divorced.
Lastly, before vacating the marital home, you should consider the financial implications. It can be expensive to set up a new home. You will also need to manage the home and pay the household expenses from a single paycheck. If you're not ready to shoulder such financial responsibility, you should stay in the marital home.
What Are Your Other Options?
The fact that you've been served with divorce papers doesn't necessarily mean you have to move out of your marital home. If it isn't possible to vacate the marital home until your divorce is finalized, your other living options include:
Living in the marital home with your estranged partner
Buying the other person out
Selling the property and splitting the equity
Refinancing the mortgage in your name alone
Bird-nesting (you and your soon-to-be ex-partner live in the house at different times with the children)
A knowledgeable family law attorney can advise you on your various living options and determine whether you can keep the property.
Keeping the House
Staying in the marital home during the divorce process doesn't guarantee that you'll be awarded the house during asset division. Under Texas law, marital property – assets acquired during the couple’s marriage – are subject to equitable and fair distribution. The following factors may be considered to achieve equitable property division:
The duration of the marriage
The financial condition of each spouse
The age and physical and mental conditions of each party
The size of separate property available to each party
The difference in the incomes and earning abilities of each spouse
Each spouse's education and potential employability
Any other factor deemed necessary by the court to achieve an equitable division
If one spouse is awarded the marital home, the other spouse will receive another property or money of a similar value. A trusted Texas divorce lawyer will walk you through the property division process and help protect what rightfully belongs to you.
Get Experienced Legal Advice
Filing for divorce in Texas often involves a lot of complex processes. Establishing a feasible living arrangement, dividing marital property, and negotiating a fair divorce settlement with your estranged partner can make the whole process more stressful and complicated. Therefore, when contemplating a divorce, you need to speak with an experienced family law attorney for detailed guidance and to explore your possible legal options.
Robin Scott Law Firm, PLLC is committed to offering personalized legal guidance and brilliant advocacy to clients in family law and divorce-related matters. As your legal counsel, she can enlighten you about your divorce options and help you navigate important divorce terms. Using her extensive knowledge, Robin Scott will work diligently with all parties involved to settle divorce issues peacefully and help you establish a fair living arrangement.
Contact Robin Scott Law Firm, PLLC today to schedule a simple case assessment with an experienced divorce lawyer. Robin Scott can offer you the reliable advocacy and detailed legal counsel you need to navigate crucial decisions in your divorce. The firm is proud to serve clients across Spring, Texas, and the surrounding areas of Harris, Montgomery, and Fort Bend counties.