Should I take the kids and move out of the marital home?

divorce attorney Jill DuffyQuestion:

My wife and I are separated and I am contemplating some strategic divorce moves.

I would like to move out of the marital home with the children, file for divorce, and give her 30 days notice that I will no longer pay her insurance or provide her with any more financial assistance.

Are these smart moves to make?


First, you should not leave the marital home. This is one of the “10 Stupidest Mistakes Men Make When Facing Divorce” as outlined in Cordell & Cordell founder Joseph Cordell’s new book. Moving from the marital home increases your monthly bills and leaves you in a powerless situation with regard to what occurs in the home and with any belongings you leave there.

Additionally, taking your children from their primary residence could be upsetting for them, and could be spur your wife to file for divorce and get a custody order to return them to her.

Before moving or taking the children you should file for divorce and petition the court for a custody and financial status quo order. Be the first to file, and keep the divorce moving along a course that you can carefully plan out with your attorney.

In most states, when you file a divorce complaint you can ask the judge to enter orders that will have immediate effect. These orders can sometimes be entered without a hearing. Although your wife may be able to get them dismissed or changed later in the case, you will have the first say relating to custody and who should pay for what during the divorce.

You should contact an attorney who is licensed in your jurisdiction to further discuss the specifics of your situation. Cordell & Cordell represents men in divorce nationwide.


Jill A. Duffy is an Associate Attorney in the Troy, Mich., office of Cordell & Cordell. She is licensed to practice in the state of Michigan. Ms. Duffy received her BA in Psychology and Spanish and graduated Magna Cum Laude from Oakland University. She received her Juris Doctor from Michigan State University College of Law and graduated Magna Cum Laude.

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