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How do you divide a matrimonial home?

Ending a marriage can be a difficult experience. There are many different aspects of a separation or divorce to consider, such as how you will move forward financially, emotionally, or as co-parents if children are involved.

Deciding on who gets to keep the matrimonial home is one part of the divorce process that can become a contentious issue. As outlined on the Ontario Attorney General website, there are a couple of different ways couples can handle the division of this specific property.

The matrimonial home is the property both couples used as their primary residence during the marriage. Even if the home belonged to one person prior to the marriage, or if only one name is on title, both spouses have rights to their shared home.

Following the decision to separate or divorce from your partner, it's best advised to identify what your legal options may be in your specific situation with an experienced family lawyer. He or she will be able to help you understand the laws regarding property division, and how they apply to you.

Both parties may claim that they want to remain in the home. For that reason, no sale or other ownership decisions can be made until the divorce proceedings are complete. Couples can negotiate about who will get to keep the home after the separation, or whether they will sell the property and divide the profit. They should also consider where their children will live, and how best to provide the children with a regular routine as they get used to the change in their family relationships.

Because real estate is generally one of the most valuable types of property that a person can own, it's important to make sure you understand your ownership rights, and how you can protect them within the family law rules and regulations.

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