Can my wife force me out of our home we still share if I leave for a week to visit a friend?

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Can my wife force me out of our home we still share if I leave for a week to visit a friend?

My wife and I are going through a divorce and she is always arguing with me. We recently went to a court hearing and the judge told her she could not remove the kids from the home but now she is trying to force me to move out. I cannot stand being around her; I even hate to come home from work. She is a stay-at-home mom and we have 3 kids, ages 8, 13, and 16. Can my wife force me out of the house, if I leave for a week to visit a friend out of state? Would this be considered abandonment?

Asked on October 26, 2011 under Family Law, Pennsylvania

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

First of all, this is not abandonment; not even close. You have the intention of returning and it's only for a week or so. As for forcing you out of the house, quite simply - your wife cannot do this. You have equal rights with her to the "marital residence" unless a final decree of divorce has been granted, or there is a separation or court order to the contrary. It is also true no matter whose name the deed (or lease) is in.

If your wife refuses to let you back into the premises upon your return you can take legal action. However, since children are involved, you may want to educate your wife before your return so as not to cause a scene when you come back.


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