November 6th, 2017

FAQs about Divorce in Maryland: The Marital Home

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Author: Monica Garcia Harms

Divorce in Maryland Marital Home

Can I continue to live in the house with the children after I get divorced?

The Court can award a spouse (with residential custody of a minor child) use and possession of the marital home both during the pendency of the litigation (otherwise known as PL or pendente lite) and after the judgment of absolute divorce. The purpose of which is to enable any child of the family to continue to live in the environment and community that are familiar to the child.  However, the Court must look at several factors, which include:

  • The best interests of the child;
  • The interest of each party in continuing to:
    • Occupy or use the family home
    • Use the family home to earn income; and
  • Any hardship imposed on the party whose interest in the family home is infringed on by the Court granting the use and possession of the marital home to the other party.

How long can I get use and possession of the marital home?

The maximum period of time a spouse can get use and possession of the marital home after the date of divorce is three years. Use and possession also terminates upon remarriage.

Can I be forced to sell our home?

Yes.  The Court can order that the marital home be sold.  If the house is ordered to be sold, a trustee will be appointed to oversee the sale of the property.

Can the Court order my spouse to transfer the house to me?

Yes.  The Court can order transfer of ownership of the marital home from one party to the other.  The party to whom the marital home is transferred must obtain the release of the other party from any lien against the property.

Who pays for the house during a use and possession period?

The court may order the allocation of financial responsibilities to either or both parties. All of any of the following expenses may be included:

  • Mortgage/rent;
  • Any debt related to the property; and
  • Cost of maintenance, insurance, assessment, taxes and similar expenses associated with the propoerty.