The Matrimonial Home Is Unique

The matrimonial home is a unique consideration when dividing the assets at the end of a marriage. By law, both spouses have equal rights of possession, and both parties are prevented from selling or mortgaging the home without the other’s permission. Preferably, the parties will come to an agreement with respect to who should remain in the home, or agree to dispose of the property and distribute the proceeds. This will typically form part of a separation agreement, formally documenting the spouses’ agreed upon terms regarding the home.

Exclusive Possession

If the parties have difficulty coming to an agreement with respect to who should remain in the property, one party may seek an order for exclusive possession against the other. It is important to note that the courts do not make this order lightly, as it can prejudice the party forced to leave the home.

The family law experts at Mills & Mills LLP understand the significance of determining how to handle the matrimonial home, and we work with our clients in an effort to negotiate a plan that works for all parties. In some circumstances, mediation, arbitration or litigation may become necessary in order to deal with the property. Should this be the case, we have decades of experience representing our clients’ interests in these situations. It is important that clients obtain advice from experienced professionals as early as possible in order to be informed of their rights, and how their decisions early on can greatly impact their rights later.

The Matrimonial Home and Equalization of Net Family Property

Ordinarily, the entire value of a matrimonial home is divided evenly between spouses when calculating the net family property in order to determine the equalization payment. This applies even in situations where one spouse owned the property prior to the marriage. However, it is possible for the parties to include terms in a marriage contract that will allow the value of the home to be deducted from this calculation, therefore protecting the spouse who brought the property into the marriage from having to divide its value in the event of divorce.

Contact our Family Law Lawyers to learn more about the Matrimonial Home

Our clients trust in our ability to explain their rights and obligations in a separation or a divorce, and appreciate our professional and personalized service. To benefit from our experience and expertise with respect to the matrimonial home as part of a separation or divorce, please contact us at 416­-863-0125 or send us an email.

Matrimonial Home Lawyers

  • Toni E. Wharton

    Toni E. Wharton


    Toni was called to the Bar of England & Wales in 2003, and practiced as a family law barrister in the UK until she moved to Toronto in 2012. She was called to the Ontario Bar in 2013. Toni article...

    416-682-7121 | Email
  • Kristen L. Woods

    Kristen L. Woods


    Kristen served her articles with Mills & Mills LLP and was invited to join the firm as an associate in 2010. Kristen practices exclusively in family law. In her family law practice, Kristen negotiates...

    416-682-7116 | Email
  • Doug Beamish

    Doug Beamish


    Doug is a family law and estate litigation lawyer and he joins us as counsel. He has over 35 years’ experience and expertise in all aspects of family law and divorce, including issues involving prop...

    416-682-7149 | Email
  • Victoria Craig

    Victoria Craig


    Victoria joined Mills & Mills LLP as an articling student in 2016 and returned as an associate in 2017. Victoria represents clients in all areas of family law, including child custody, access, chi...

    416-682-7053 | Email
  • Patricia N. Gordon

    Patricia N. Gordon


    Patricia articled with the firm and returned as an associate in 2015. Patricia completed her J.D. at the University of Western Ontario in 2014. Prior to receiving her law degree, she completed ...

    416-682-7146 | Email
  • Gillian Patricia Hayes

    Gillian Patricia Hayes


    Gillian assists clients in all areas of family law including separation, divorce, custody and access issues, child support, spousal support, domestic contracts, and child protection matters. As a trai...

    416-682-7060 | Email


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