Living with the person you are divorcing can be a deeply stressful and uncomfortable experience. In amicable divorces, both parties can potentially deal with their shared living arrangements without much fuss, but if you and your spouse don’t get along it can create a difficult situation. You may consider moving out before the divorce is finalized. While this may be an option under certain circumstances, there are times when moving out may not be your best option. We’ll go through the pros and cons of moving out in the middle of a divorce.
Reasons You Shouldn’t Move Out Before Finalizing a Divorce
One of the biggest reasons that moving out of your marital home is not in your best interest is because it may look as though you are abandoning any claim to the property in the divorce. In reality, this isn’t true. Moving out does not relinquish your rights to the property in any legal sense, but it can skew the opinion of the court when making decisions. The court tends to lean towards preserving the status quo, especially if children are involved. If you move out and the children and your spouse are still living in the house, the court will likely make decisions favoring them.
Another major reason to postpone moving out of your marital home is because of the financial burden of spending money on your own housing. In many situations, you may end up paying for two places.
When Should You Move Out Before Finalizing a Divorce
We laid out the cons of moving out before finalizing the divorce, but there are plenty of things that might override those reasons. The most obvious one is in situations where the relationship is violent or you feel like you are in physical danger. Obviously, your safety is more important than any financial aspects that were mentioned above.
You may also consider moving out if you have the financial resources to do so and the prospect of living with your estranged spouse for the duration of the divorce is simply intolerable. Even then, you should discuss your options with your divorce attorney before you start packing your bags.
We stated above that staying in the home with the children is a pro, but it can also be a con depending on your situation. If you are constantly fighting with your spouse, it can affect your children mentally and emotionally. If you have the financial means to pay for a separate place it can help avoid unhealthy arguments from negatively impacting your children’s lives.
Consider Separation Mediation to Speed Up the Divorce Process
The divorce process can be complex and stressful, especially if it involves contentious topics like child custody, alimony, and child support. However, litigation does not have to be the endpoint of the dissolution of a marriage. Many couples choose divorce mediation to cooperatively and amicably resolve their dispute and reach an agreement before the court gets involved. Through mediation services, both parties work with an impartial mediator to create a legally binding agreement based on both parties’ needs and desires. New Jersey divorce & separation mediator Steven B. Menack has decades of experience in making divorce mediation as stress-free as possible for the sake of both the couple and any children involved.
Read our comprehensive guide to divorce mediation and legal separation in New Jersey for more information.