No. If you elect to move out of the marital home during the marriage, you do not lose any of your rights to the equity in the home. Ultimately, your rights to the home are determined by the factors set forth under the equitable distribution statute N.J.S.A. 2A:34-23.1, which includes the following:
In the event that a home was owned by one party before the marriage, there are factors which must be considered to determine whether the home will be considered exempt or will fall under equitable distribution. Even a home that was owned by one party prior to the marriage and is still solely owned by that party could be subject to equitable distribution in a divorce. If there were contributions paying down the mortgage during the marriage or improvements paid for with marital funds during the marriage, the non-titled spouse may have a claim for equitable distribution. However, equitable distribution does not automatically mean a 50/50 split or an equal division.
Although moving out of the home during a divorce does not alter one’s ownership interest or equitable distribution rights, moving out of the home can result in the party remaining in the home having sole possession of the home until the divorce is final. A party should consider this and should consult with an attorney prior to moving out of the marital home during the divorce.
William J. Rudnik. is a family law attorney at Gebhardt & Kiefer, P.C. where he successfully represents clients in Family Law court in matters involving divorce, property division and more.Back To Top