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Mowery Youell & Galeano, LTD. Attorneys at Law
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How judges decide who gets the house in a divorce

Ohio couples who are in the process of divorce have many issues to consider, with one of the most important being what will happen to their home. Sometimes couples can come to an agreement on their own about their house, but other times, a judge must decide.

When deciding on property division, judges must consider several factors. Laws vary by state, but in all states, judges must try to do what is in the best interests of any minor children the divorcing couple has. When deciding which spouse will get the house, often whoever gets primary custody of the children will also be awarded the house so that the children will be able to remain there.

In some cases, a judge may force a divorcing couple to sell their home and split the profits. The split is not guaranteed to be equal, however. One couple may get more from the sale if they put more money into the home. A judge may also favor a spouse for retainment of the home if it has been in that spouse's family for several generations or it was inherited.

Some couples decide to remain in the same home after divorce. They may choose to live in different areas of the house, or one may live in a separate apartment or guest house on the property. When a couple can reach an agreement on what to do with their home, a judge will not need to be involved in the decision.

Property division in a divorce generally aims to divide property equitably, which does not necessarily mean equally. In addition to a home and personal belongings, a jointly owned business could be subject to property division by the court if the couple cannot reach an agreement on how to divide business ownership and assets.

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