Who gets the House in a Divorce in Minnesota?
This is two questions in one: How do I get my share of the house and who gets to stay in the house?
How do I get my financial share of the house?
Minn Stat. 518.58 defines property division in general. In most Minnesota marriages, the house is either completely a marital asset or has some marital component.
Next, spouses figure out home equity. Home equity is the home’s value minus any loans against it. This is typically the value of the marital asset.
A home is not like a bank account. That is, it can’t be split between spouses. Instead, either one spouse keeps it or the house is sold. For this question, I’ll assume one spouse is keeping the house.
In this event, the spouse without the house is owed his or her marital share of equity. A spouse typically pays home equity by:
- Payment from some other marital asset
- A forced sale provision which will require the sale of the home by some future date, or
- Getting a loan or mortgage and using that to pay.
Who gets to stay in the house?
This is home occupancy. There is no bright-line rule for who stays in the home. Typically neither spouse has a superior right to stay.
Therefore a Court may consider the following, among other things:
- the custody arrangement,
- who can afford to pay the mortgage,
- who’s on the mortgage,
- whether one spouse can get another loan,
- who bought the house,
- when the house was bought, and
- how liquidation of the home may affect other financials.
As this shows, there can be a lot of argument around a divorcing couple’s specific situation. It will be decided on a case by case basis.
For other divorce or family law questions, please consult the list to the left or the FAQ page. If you’re interested in retaining an attorney to help you, please feel free to contact my office for a consultation using the contact information on the left or the contact form on the Majeski Law home page.