Deciding to divorce in New York will mean making a lot of changes in your life. One of the biggest adjustments you'll probably have to make will likely have to do with where you'll live.
If you and your spouse own a house together, you may not relish the idea of living together until you finalize your divorce. However, many people will rush to tell you that moving out of your shared home before the court finalizes the divorce will mean you don't get to keep the house. Is that really true?
Moving out may affect possession but not your ownership rights
There is a grain of truth to the claim that moving out will affect your right to the house. If one spouse wants to keep the house and continue living there after a divorce, they want to retain possession. Sometimes, both spouses would like to live in the marital home after the divorce.
Judges will look at many different considerations when deciding who retains possession of the house, including whether they currently live there and any custody arrangements for their children. If you move out, that might mean that your spouse will have a slightly stronger claim to possession of the house after the divorce.
However, when it comes to your share of equity or your actual ownership interest in the property, your rights to equitable distribution don't end just because you moved out of the house. You still have the same interest in the property as you would otherwise, even if you start staying with your parents or move into an apartment.
Learning about the property division process can help you feel more confident as you plan for a divorce in New York.