Advice On Living Arrangements When Divorcing
Living Arrangements When Separating
When your relationship has come to an end its very unlikely that you will want to live with your ex. However, it’s important to know your legal rights on the matter before putting yourself in a problematic situation.
Your rights to your house vary depending on your current situation. There are many variables including: If you own your own home, are living in rented accommodation, married or cohabiting and if children are dependent upon you.
It’s important that you always take time to understand your current situation and the situation you will be in after. If you voluntarily leave your property you may also give up your legal rights to that property. If you then seek help from the council they may decide that you have intentionally made yourself homeless and will have no legal obligation to find you a new home.
If you have a joint tenancy then you both have equal rights to the property.
The only way you can end a joint tenancy agreement is for one of you to surrender your rights to the property or to apply for a court order called an injunction.
An injunction is a court order that orders a person to stop doing or to do something.
If your tenancy agreement is only in one person’s name then they have the legal right to stay in the property.
Many couples can come to an amicable agreement, this may be that one of you volunteer to leave, or you both decide to end the tenancy (if you are able to).
If you are unable to come to an agreement then mediation may be the best solution, they will help to break the communication barrier and allow you to talk calmly and rationally.
If you have a joint tenancy agreement but one of the tenants is refusing you access to the property you can apply for an occupation order.
An occupation order can:
• Order an individual to leave the property and give an exact date and time for them to leave
• Reinstate someone who has been locked out of their property
• Decide who occupies which part of a property
Once you’ve applied for an occupation order the court will look at both parties situations and will take many different factors into consideration. The main factor is based on which party will suffer the most by being removed.
It’s important to note an occupation order last just 6 months, you should reach a solution within these 6 months.
If you own your own home then it can be a little more complicated. If you have a joint mortgage then we have written you a detailed guide on what to expect, you can read that here.
If you do not have a joint mortgage but are married then you will still have occupancy rights.
This means that your partner cannot:
• Force the other to leave without a court order
• Rent out or sell the property without getting the other’s agreement or a court order
• Take out a loan against the property (for example, a second mortgage) without the other’s
We live together but my partner is the sole owner
Unfortunately, if you are not married and you do not have a joint mortgage then your rights to the home drastically reduce.
Your partner may be able to:
• Evict you without getting a court order
• Rent out or sell the home without your consent
• Take out a loan against the property without your consent.
If you feel like you have the right to stay in your home then you are able to apply for occupancy rights, this will give you the same rights as a married couple with a sole owner.
We hope that this post has been helpful to you in some way, it’s very important that you find out what the law says about your situation before making decisions that you may regret.