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Is moving out of the family home during the divorce advisable?

Make no mistake, divorce even under the best of circumstances is a very difficult undertaking. Sharing the same living space with someone you no longer love (or resent) can be anything but bearable. But should you leave the marital home before the divorce is finalized?

You may have compelling reasons to vacate the marital home before the conclusion of your divorce. However, you need to understand that doing so comes with consequences. 

Here are a few things you need to keep in mind when leaving the marital home. 

It could impact your custody case

Leaving your children behind can complicate your custody claim. This is especially true if you do not get into some form of custody and visitation arrangement with your spouse prior to leaving. In the absence of a written agreement, your spouse could easily claim that you abandoned or conceded the children’s custody to them. If the court is convinced that you are not interested in the custody of your kids, they may grant the other parent primary custody. 

It could impact your finances

Moving out basically means finding a new place to rent and possibly furnish. And if you are also contributing to the other home’s bills (like mortgage and upkeep), then this could mean double expenditure, which can greatly strain your finances.

Your spouse may also take advantage of your decision to leave to petition the court to bar you from returning into the home. If their wish is granted, then you may never return to the home while the divorce is underway. 

Protecting your rights

The decision to leave the marital home during the divorce largely depends on the circumstances of your case. For instance, a threat of violence may warrant leaving. Learning how Massachusetts marital laws work can help you protect your rights and interests when determining whether to leave or not.