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Can I be forced to sell a jointly owned house?

Posted on 28th September 2022 in Family Law, Dispute Resolution

Posted by

Rachael Jones

Solicitor
Can I be forced to sell a jointly owned house?

Whether you are married or in a cohabiting relationship, the family home is generally the most important family asset. In either situation, if you jointly own a property, there are steps your spouse or partner can take to force the sale of your home and the Court has the ultimate power to force the sale of the property.

 

Married Couples

Unless you and your spouse agree to deal with the home in another way, they can apply to Court for an order for sale. Such an order would not ordinarily be made until a final hearing.

In financial proceedings relating to a divorce, the Court will need to consider whether it is appropriate to retain the property to continue to provide a home, or to sell it and realise the capital.

In making the decision, the court will consider a number of factors. These include:

  • Income, earning capacity and other financial resources of each party.
  • Financial needs, obligations and responsibilities of each party.
  • Standard of living.
  • Age of each party and the length of marriage.

This is not an exhaustive list and the Court must take all circumstances of the case into account. Furthermore, where there is a child, the Court will have particular regard to the child’s needs.

Our experienced family law solicitors can advise you on your unique, individual situation.

 

Cohabiting Couples

For cohabiting couples the position is governed by different law, the Court is still able to make an order for sale where parties cannot otherwise agree on how to deal with property.

It will be our experienced litigation team that are best positioned to assist cohabiting couples who find themselves in this situation.

 

Court’s Decision

In either situation, the Court can make an order for the immediate sale of the property. However, they are also able to defer the sale to a later date if it considers it appropriate having regard to the various circumstances. For example, it may be delayed to preserve the home until a child reaches the age of 18 years old, or it may be delayed to allow the parties to put themselves in a better financial position.

Whether you are a married couple or a cohabiting couple, our experienced solicitors will be able to assist and advise you on your individual circumstances. Please do not hesitate to get in touch.

 

Find out more

Whether you are a married couple or a cohabiting couple, our experienced solicitors will be able to assist and advise you on your individual circumstances. Please do not hesitate to get in touch.

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