Wife and husband signing divorce documents

If We Get a Divorce, Do I Have To Move Out?

Wilson Law Firm PLLC Sept. 29, 2022

Matters involving divorce and domestic relationships often involve sensitive emotions for all parties involved and must be handled carefully. When considering dissolving your marital union, issues of living arrangements usually arise and must be addressed.  

Among your possible living options is to vacate the house, continue living there with your estranged partner, buy out the other person, or bird-nesting. An accomplished Oklahoma family law attorney can analyze your available living options and how they may affect child custody arrangement and asset division.  

At Wilson Law Firm PLLC, I have the practice and knowledge to advise and guide clients in challenging family law matters involving living arrangements in a divorce. I'm open to discuss your personal situation and help decide the best living arrangement for you and your family. My firm is proud to serve clients throughout Shawnee, Ada, Norman, and Chandler, Oklahoma. 

Considerations in Deciding Best Living Arrangements 

Most spouses going through a divorce often find it challenging to live together with their soon-to-be ex-spouse before their divorce is finalized. At the same time, vacating the marital home may be difficult due to the emotional attachment to the family. To help you make an informed decision regarding living arrangements, here are some crucial things to consider: 


One of the most important considerations in deciding living arrangement is your safety. Are you and your children safe in the house? Is your partner abusive? Does your spouse have domestic violence history? You need to make your safety and your kid's safety a priority.  

If you consider the home not safe enough, you may need to move out. Alternatively, you may request a protective order from the Oklahoma court. If your request is approved, the abusive partner will be asked to move out of the house. 


Another reason to vacate the house may be for your comfort and peace of mind. Especially when the marital relationship is strained, you may need to move out of the home to mitigate conflicts and disagreements, prevent hostilities, as well as other mental health problems. 


However, vacating the marital home may have some implications on your finances. Setting up a new apartment is generally expensive. The same also applies to paying for household expenses and managing the property from a single paycheck. Unless you are financially buoyant or well-prepared to handle such financial responsibility alone, you shouldn't move out of the marital home. 


In most cases, the parent who has physical custody of the children will continue living in the marital home. Oklahoma courts believe that settling or adjusting to a new home or environment may be difficult for children. Therefore, the family court may decide to retain the children's existing living arrangements. Conversely, the parent who vacates the marital home will be eligible for parenting time. 

What Are Your Other Options? 

In the event that vacating the marital home until your divorce is finalized may not be feasible, here are some other possible options regarding living arrangements: 

  • Keep staying in the marital home with your estranged partner. 

  • Sell the property and divide the equity. 

  • Buy out the other person – if you have the resources. 

  • Refinance the mortgage in your name alone. 

  • Bird-nesting – this is a living arrangement where you and your estranged partner live in the house with your kids at different times. 

An understanding Oklahoma divorce attorney can assess your possibilities, help decide the best living arrangement for you and your loved ones, or determine whether you may be able to keep the property.   

Keeping the House 

However, staying in the house during the divorce proceedings doesn't necessarily mean you get to keep the property. Oklahoma is an equitable distribution state. According to state laws, marital property must be divided equitably or fairly. In a contested divorce, the Oklahoma court will consider the following factors to achieve equitable property distribution: 

  • The duration of the marriage 

  • Either spouse's physical or mental condition 

  • Each spouse's earning capacity or ability to work 

  • The parent who will take care of the children 

  • The spouses' debts 

  • The amount of spousal support paid from one spouse to another 

  • Any conduct that caused the value of marital property to appreciate or depreciate. 

If one spouse receives the marital home during the division of property, the other party will be given another property or money of equivalent value. An experienced Oklahoma asset division lawyer will advocate for the best interests of your family and help protect what is rightfully yours. 

Get Loyal Legal Assistance Today   

Getting a divorce in the state of Oklahoma usually involves a lot of complicated procedures. Negotiating a fair divorce settlement with your estranged spouse, dividing marital assets, or establishing a living arrangement can make the entire marital dissolution process very complex and difficult. Therefore, when thinking about a divorce, consulting with a wise family law attorney is critical for legal support and to help you navigate intelligent decisions.  

At Wilson Law Firm PLLC, I enjoy providing outstanding legal services and guiding clients through the complexities of divorce. As your attorney, I can research your possible divorce options, help create a fair living arrangement, and help you and your spouse navigate crucial divorce decisions. 

You don't necessarily have to vacate your marital home before your divorce is finalized. Contact my firm – Wilson Law Firm PLLC – today to speak with a seasoned divorce attorney in Oklahoma. I possess the dedicated advocacy, assistance, and personalized legal counsel you need to navigate decisions in your divorce matters. My firm is proud to serve clients throughout Shawnee, Ada, Norman, and Chandler, Oklahoma.