Certified Family Law Specialist, State Bar of California, and Board of Legal Specialization

Can My Estranged Spouse Kick Me Out of Our Home?

In an earlier blog post, I addressed the issue of whether or not you should move out of house voluntarily. Here, the discussion is a bit different, hence the question: Whether your spouse can have you removed from the house.

Up until last year, in California, it was much easier to obtain what is referred to as a “kick out order”. The old “Order to Show Cause” forms had space where you can make such a request and these requests were routinely made. Then, there was a change. The new version of the form, which is now entitled “Request for Orders” no longer has a kick out request available on it.

The reason for this is that kick out orders are only available under the Domestic Violence Act. That means you can only be kicked out of your home if the court finds that you have committed one or more acts of Domestic Violence. If the court cannot make such findings, you will not be excluded from your residence.

In the real world, however, this might not mean much. It is very easy for someone to lie to the Court and say that you were violent or threatening violence when you were not. Remember, the court can issue a residence exclusion order if it finds that you committed such acts. If your spouse lies and the court buys it, you can still get kicked out. This can have an adverse effect on your ability to see your children (See California Family Code Section 3044). My best advice is if at all possible, do not live in the same house (or even the same neighborhood) as someone you are divorcing.

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