Can you force your spouse to move out of the house?

Sometimes “forever or worse” becomes “get out of the house” which begs the question, what can you do if your spouse won’t move out of the house? In the context of a Michigan divorce there are only two ways to compel someone to move out of the house.

The first way to compel your spouse to move out is to simply ask, or tell your spouse to move out. It is not uncommon for a spouse to move out of the marital home in the hopes of getting back together (time alone) or simply to avoid conflict.

The second way to compel your spouse to move out of the house is with a motion for exclusive use of the house is a request made to the trial court for a spouse to move out of the house. Typically, the person filing the motion must allege sufficient facts and circumstances justifying an Order for exclusive use even if they do not rise to level of needing a PPO. For example, if the home is filled with argument which disturb the kids or there are other extenuating circumstances a court can order one parent to move out of the house especially if the circumstances at the house are toxic.

The third way to compel your spouse to move out of the house with by applying for a Personal Protection Order which is often referred to simply as a PPO. A PPO is a court order used to step threats of violence against you. When issued against a spouse, a PPO typically includes a prohibition from residing in the same house. However, if the circumstances of your case do not necessitate a PPO you can also file a motion for exclusive use of the house or marital home.

However, there are other considerations that should be taken into account before requesting your spouse move out of the house such as financial considerations. There is a cost to moving out of the house. If resources are limited you may not be able to afford having the parties live in two separate houses.


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I have been exclusively practicing divorce and family law in Michigan for over two decades. The attorneys at Findling Law all share the core value of practicing law to help people navigate change in their lives, without compromising principles.  We specialize in high socio-economic, high-profile and high-conflict cases, while also working with clients of all backgrounds. We recognize that the most important aspect of the practice of law is the application of the law to your specific circumstances.That is why we provide more free information on divorce and family law than any other Michigan law firm. We want to help you manage your situation. Allow our exceptional legal team to help you navigate the change in your life, without compromising principles.

By:  Daniel Findling

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