Can I leave my house with my kids and move into an apartment while we try to sell our house during our divorce?

UPDATED: Mar 7, 2012

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Can I leave my house with my kids and move into an apartment while we try to sell our house during our divorce?

My wife and I have been married for 14 years and we have 2 teenage boys 17 and 13. She left us all 6 weeks ago for a married man in another state. She wants to file an uncontested divorce here and let the kids live with me. Neither of us want the house and we are going try to sell it off. Can I legally change addresses and move into an apartment with my boys while the house is on the market? Is there any legal recourse she could take because I removed the kids from the home to an apartment?

Asked on March 7, 2012 under Family Law, Washington


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

I am so sorry for your situation.  You sounds like a stand up kind of guy and this must be a very difficult time.  If you and your wife agree to what you are proposing I see no real problem with what you want to do as long as you do not move out of state. However, I would not make a move unless and until you have some sort of order or agreement in writing.  You may seek temporary custody of the children and / or exclusive use and occupancy of the house.  If you choose to put the house on the market please make sure that she signs the realtor agreement as well.  Good luck. 

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