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What happens to our long-time shared home if we divorce?

On Behalf of | Jul 31, 2018 | Divorce, Firm News

An Arkansas resident seeking a quick and definitive response from an experienced family law attorney concerning the optimal decision to make regarding the family home in divorce … is likely not going to get one.

Things are a bit more nuanced than that. What might clearly spell a good move for one divorcing party might be just about the worst possible outcome for another.

The bottom line: Divorce is a fact-specific event, with right-versus-wrong determinations being flatly varied from case to case.

Perhaps it is the case that you and your impending ex have young children with strong emotional bonds to the only home they’ve ever known. Local and high-quality schools surround your property. Your children have other friends nearby, as well as a nurturing network of relatives.

If that is the scenario you’re looking at, it might indeed make strong sense for you – that is, the parent with primary custody – to stay in the family home.

There are of course other scenarios in the divorce realm, too. Maybe you and your soon-to-be former partner are sans kids, want to get on with your new – and separate — lives and are far more interested in an equitable money split than in continuing responsibilities concerning a home.

Remember, home-linked costs encompass things like property taxes, maintenance outlays and more.

Myriad and sometimes complex issues can crop up when talk turns to the home (which it will probably do immediately) during divorce negotiations. If one party stays and the other one splits, how will the home be valued and its equity distributed? Will problems arise for the continued home dweller concerning the property’s lack of readily convertible liquidity, continued mortgage payments that might owed and taxes that might come due if the home is sold later? Have such matters and all other potentially material issues even been discussed?

They need to be, given the central importance of a family-owned home in virtually every divorce. Questions or concerns can be directed to a proven family law attorney well versed in divorce-linked property matters.


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