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After 17 years of marriage my wife has asked me to move out. Should I? Do I loose legal rights if I do?

Brooksville, FL |

We have been married for 17 years and have 3 children ages 17, 16 and 15. I thought we has a wonderful marriage until 10/18/13 when she told me she was unhappy and wants me to move out so we can be separated for awhile. She has no where to go, I have friends I can stay with. I was completely blindsided by this. She has infidelities in the past. We have started seeing a marriage counselor.

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Attorney answers 4


I wouldn't recommend leaving for an extended period. If you leave her with the kids for an extended period, it sort of sets a precedence for time-sharing. With the kids ages, I am not sure if that is a major concern for you. Other than that, it probably doesn't matter. It shouldn't make a difference regarding either parties right to the marital home. I realize you stated that you have a 17 year marriage, but if you have technically been married for less then 17 years, you might want to consider filing for divorce before your 17th anniversary. 17 year is the threshold length of a marriage for consideration of permanent alimony


You are certainly not required to move out, and you do not lose legal rights if you do. However, if you decide to move out, make sure that you make it clear that it is your intention to see your children frequently and to have overnight time-sharing with them on a regular basis.

Please note that without more specific information, I am unable to provide a definitive answer to your question. Please accept my answer for informational purposes only and I hope it will give you a starting point in seeking legal representation. I would be more than happy to meet with you to provide legal advice in a consultation.


There is so much at stake here. Try and consult an attorney in your area and see what would b best for your particular situation. many offer free consults. Good luck.

This information is a general answer and is not specific to any particular case. Carin Manders Constantine, Esq. 727-456-0032/ 727-488-8272


You only forfeit possession if you move out. Your rights to the equity in the home remain intact.