During a divorce, you may want your spouse to leave your home as soon as possible if you are awarded ownership of the home. However, many spouses choose to remain the home even after multiple requests to leave. Other spouses refuse to give up one key to the house and return unexpectedly before you have a chance to change the locks. If your spouse won't leave, there are several things you can do.

Judges Have Discretion 

A judge can issue an order for your spouse to leave your home, even if their name is on the lease and even if your divorce is still pending. However, in most cases, the judge will ask the couple to simply be patient and wait until their case has been fully resolved in court. 

One way that the problem may be resolved is for the couple to be ordered by the court to sell their home and divide the profit generated from the sale. However, this might be avoided if you have children and the courts don't consider the selling of the home to be in their best interests. 

Another approach is to have one spouse buy out the other spouse's interest in the home. Then, it's easy to keep your home and provide your ex with the finances necessary to move to a different home.

Domestic Violence Can Expedite Your Spouse's Removal

If there is evidence of domestic violence in the home, you will need to speak with a judge to seek relief. The judge is very likely to remove the spouse in cases of domestic abuse. In these cases, the best way to proceed with having your spouse removed is when your case is ongoing. 

However, there needs to be substantial evidence of abuse. If you are in imminent danger of your spouse, the courts might issue an emergency order of exclusive occupancy. For some states, this separation may be temporary. Other states seek to separate both spouses throughout the process of the divorce.

A Divorce Attorney Can Help You Settle the Matter Out of Court

Except in cases of domestic violence, you do not have to turn to the courts necessarily when your spouse refuses to leave. The easiest and cheapest approach is to come to an agreement outside of court with the help of an experienced divorce attorney. A divorce attorney can help you and your spouse understand how the decisions that you make throughout your divorce proceedings will affect you.