How does remaining in the marital home affect child custody?

Mens divorce lawyerQuestion:

My wife and I have continued living together during our separation because I pay half the mortgage and cannot afford to move out of the marital home.

Is it in my best interest to maintain financial support of the home we still live in, or is it in my best interest to stop that support in order to move out and get my own apartment so that I’m not putting my custody case at risk?


In the state I practice in (Missouri), I typically counsel clients to remain in the marital home while the divorce is pending unless there is a court order to the contrary.

If the court ordered you to leave the marital residence and to continue paying the mortgage, then you must follow the order. If there is not an order in place, then you may want to consider remaining in the marital home.

If you can live in the marital home without causing conflict between you and your soon to be ex-wife, then you would have more visitation time with your children and less expenses.

It is easier for you to argue that you should have more visitation time with your children if you see them on a frequent and regular basis. It is easier to see them if you remain in the marital home.

Please understand that my opinions are based upon the limited facts that you provided to me. For a more in depth discussion of your legal rights, I urge you to contact an Attorney immediately.

Cordell & Cordell has well qualified and experienced men’s divorce lawyers nationwide if you require additional legal assistance.


Michelle Hughes is an Associate Attorney in the Jefferson County, Missouri office of Cordell & Cordell where she practices domestic relations exclusively. Ms. Hughes is licensed in the states of Missouri and Illinois, and the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri. A native to metro St. Louis, Ms. Hughes received her BBA in Economics and Finances from McKendree College. She later received her Juris Doctor from Thomas Cooley Law School where she graduated cum laude.

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