If You Leave the Home Before Any Divorce Paperwork is Filed, Are You Forfeiting Your Rights of the Assets of the Home?

Divorce can be an unsettling time. One of the most prominent concerns among individuals experiencing divorce is whether they are giving up the rights to their home by moving out. That’s because, in the overwhelming majority of divorce cases, one of the parties will want to leave the house. But simply moving out of the marital home before the divorce is finalized or even begun does not necessarily mean automatic forfeit of any property rights.

In a Florida divorce, rights to marital property and assets are not necessarily determined by custody or control. How your home and assets are divvied up by the courts will depend instead on a number of factors, most notably on when exactly that property and assets were attained. Regardless of whether or not you remain in the home during divorce proceedings, if the property was purchased after you were married, the home is marital property and therefore remains yours even if you’re not living in it.

In a dissolution of marriage, Florida law requires marital property and assets be split between the parties. In the event you or your spouse wish to keep the marital property, one party may buy out the other’s share of it; but otherwise the property will be sold and the equity or debt will be divided equally—unless otherwise instructed by the court—between each of you.

How your divorce plays out in the end will depend on the particulars of your case. If you left your home before divorce papers were filed and are wondering how this affects your rights to the property, consult with an experienced Florida divorce attorney to assess the unique nature of your case. A skilled divorce attorney can help you better understand how divorce works and ensure that your rights and interests are being protected.

This post was written by David Hurvitz. Follow David on Google+.