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SPONSORED: Who gets the house?

Staff reporter

SPONSORED: Who gets the house?

This is a question that family lawyers are asked when couples split. The family home is central to the divorce and often one of the biggest worries’ parties have in sorting out financial matters.

What are the options in a divorce settlement?

All assets held in joint or sole names must be identified and values determined in order for negotiations to take place and to bring about a solution.

There are several options. For example, one spouse could buy the other out and keep the house; the house could be sold and the proceeds divided or one person can remain in the house and the other person defers receiving their share until a certain point in the future. This is more common in cases where there are children to consider.

What if I cannot afford to run the home myself?

If you cannot meet all the outgoings it may be possible to seek assistance from your spouse as an interim or long term arrangement if they have the income to assist and your outgoings are reasonable. It is important for you to maximise your own income – ensuring you maximise your earning potential and make claims for benefits that you may be entitled to.

The house is not in my name but that of my spouse. Do I still have rights?

If it is the family home a Court would consider it a matrimonial asset and will look at the circumstances further. If the family home is in the sole name of your spouse you can protect your interest by entering a Notice of Home Rights against the property at the Land Registry to protect your right to occupy and place any buyer on notice of your potential claim. You can also consider freezing Orders to prevent a transfer if that seems likely.

If I move out will I lose my rights to the house?

No. If matters are so difficult at home that one party needs to move out it will not affect your entitlement to claim on the property.

Do I need divorce advice?

Seeking advice rather than listening to stories and myths around what happens to assets in the marriage is always advised. Every situation is different and we can help you make informed decisions about your future.

For free initial advice please contact Kathryn Coyle on 01628  659411 or visit to download our FREE understanding divorce document.

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