Myth: If I move out of the house, I give up all my rights to the house and everything in it. My spouse gets to keep the house and everything in it, no matter whether it is his or hers or ours. They can sell it, give it away or dump it in the trash, once I leave the house, I get only what I can take with me.
Truth: Possession is not nine-tenths of the law in this arena. If the home was purchased during marriage, in this state it is community property, whether one spouse paid the majority of the mortgage or not. Even if the house was owned by one party before marriage, the equity built up after marriage may be an asset of the community.
You can get a restraining order to make sure the mortgage gets paid and to make sure the property is not damaged and is maintained.
There may be good reasons for a person to leave the family home, such as for the personal safety of a spouse and the children. But you should make a plan with your attorney before moving out.
So, moving out does not mean you surrender your rights to the house.
Alleviate the Fear of Losing Your House - Talk to Molly
See which other divorce myths I debunk in our free eBook, 9 Urban Myths about Divorce That Can Hurt You.
And if you need help protecting your home or want to make sure your property division is fair and equitable, contact me to set up a consultation. Call 425-460-0550 or contact us online to schedule a consultation.