Today, I am going to talk about a concept referred to as occupation rent.
When couples separate, one person often remains in the home and the other person lives elsewhere while the couple tries to resolve the issues between them. Occupation rent is when the person who stays in the home is required to pay rent to the person who left the home to compensate the person who no longer lives in his or her home.
It is important to note that occupation rent is not available to every person who moves out of his or her home after separation. Occupation rent is only available when both people own the home and the court considers it reasonable to award occupation rent.
Some relevant factors for determining whether occupation rent is reasonable include:
- When the claim for occupation rent was made,
- How long the couple lived in the home,
- Whether the person who moved out of the home could access the equity in the home,
- The conduct of the couple, including whether support was being paid,
- Who paid the mortgage and other expenses related to the home,
- Whether any children resided with the person who stayed in the home, and
- Whether the person who stayed in the home increased the value of the home.
The amount of occupation rent to be paid is usually one half of the rent that a third party, such as a renter, would pay to rent the home.
The legal term ‘Ouster’, which means being forced to leave the home, is not always required for occupation rent. This means that you may receive occupation rent even if you voluntarily left the home.
If you would like to learn more about occupation rent or other family law issues, you can visit our website at www.separation.ca. If you would like legal advice about your own situation, please call us at 905-415-1636 for a consultation.
Thank you for watching and I’ll see you next time!