What to do if your ex won’t move out.

“Our relationship has ended but my ex-partner won’t move out of the house that we own [or rent].”

When a relationship is over one of the hardest decisions will be who leaves. Both you and your spouse or ex-partner are entitled to live in your home after separation regardless of whose name is on the rental agreement or the title of the property. Neither party can be forced to leave just because the property is not in their name, unless the Court orders it.

If you have decided to move out, you should be aware that leaving the property it will not affect your entitlement to a share of the property. Any rights you have built up during the relationship will remain even if you leave. If you fear violence, you should seek advice immediately and take steps to ensure your immediate safety.

Sometimes one party can obtain a sole occupancy order requiring the other party to leave the home. The Court can make what is called an Exclusive Occupancy Order of the house for either spouse. That means you can live in the house, without your spouse living there until the property has been divided. Usually when the Court makes an order of this kind, the responsibility to ensure the upkeep and presentation of the house will be on the remaining party. In circumstances where you are renting you may also need to consider if you can afford the rent.

When the Court makes this kind of order, it will look at the needs and resources of the individual parties and the children. This will usually only be made in exceptional situations where there is family violence or threats are being made by one spouse against the other, especially if the children are affected, or the house has been adjusted because somebody has a disability.

If you find yourself in circumstances such as these it would be best to get individual tailored advice, especially in circumstances where you can no longer meet your financial obligations.

How we help

Marriage or relationship breakdown is one of the most stressful life events that you will encounter. Getting through it and successfully moving on will depend on many things, including the compassion, ability and experience of your Family Lawyer.

We understand the difficulties often encountered by parties involved in Family Law disputes and assist our clients to achieve both short and long term objectives.

If your aim is to get things resolved fairly and quickly so that you can get on with life and/or make a fresh start, call now to speak to one our Family Lawyers.