When a relationship has ended, a couple that shares children or that is legally married may find themselves feeling uncomfortable living in the same home. Leaving a house that is jointly owned prior to the end of litigation is not always recommended, but there are times when moving is the best possible option. The process of moving is difficult during the best of times, and when a move coincides with a relationship ending, things become more complicated. Being aware of moving etiquette for separating couples will help you navigate a potentially sensitive situation.
Many of the conversations leading up to a separation are unpleasant, but that does not mean that confrontation needs to occur throughout the entire moving process. Respecting each other’s personal space and boundaries can reduce the number of disagreements that may potentially turn into full-fledged arguments. Remaining calm and avoiding topics that are potentially volatile is recommended by couples who lived together out of financial necessity after break ups. Remember, the living situation is only temporary and focusing on your end goal can help you during rough spots.
Set a Date and Stick to it
Once you have decided to move out and have discussed your plans with your former partner, give him or her a projected move out date, and then stick to it. Knowing exactly when to expect you to leave the property helps the remaining partner plan certain things like child care and personal expenses. Do not change your moving date unless it is absolutely necessary, since a change in your plans could affect your ex, especially if he or she is planning to have a roommate move in. Staying on schedule with your move is courteous and avoids unnecessary confrontations.
Do Not Restrict Access
If you are the partner who will remain in your home, do not do anything that will restrict your former partner’s ability to access the property. Make sure that he or she is able to use keys, entry passcodes, etc. to move items out of the home without you being present. In situations where the property is owned jointly by both parties, avoid changing locks or installing security alarms before property ownership is settled. The last thing you need is an unexpected court hearing because your former partner is accusing you of keeping him or her out of a house that he or she legally owns and is financially responsible for.
When Unsure Get Advice
When you or someone close to you is considering a post-break up move, never be afraid to get legal advice. Any major decision concerning jointly-owned property could lead to major repercussions for both parties involved. The division of property attorneys at Vayman & Teitelbaum realize that a house is often the most valuable asset shared by any couple. We work with you to protect your legal rights and ensure that any choice you make ultimately leads to a desirable outcome. With offices located through the Atlanta, Georgia metro area, we are available to answer any questions that you have. Call us today at 678-736-7700 and schedule your consultation.