Separation and mortgage liability


Hello, I am inquiring to find out if there is a way to have my name removed from my mortgage and end my liability towards it if I am persuing a legal separation. I need to move into my own place (leasing) and I cannot afford to pay a mortgage as well as for an apartment. My husband is primary on the mortgage and I am secondary. I would also like to find out what else I would need to do to document a separation regarding shared custody of my daughter. I want to move out as soon as possible because I feel unsafe in my home. Thank you.


hi, First I AM NOT AN ATTORNEY. But from what I understand, you cannot just remove yourself from a mortgage. Instead the person that wants the house has to go thru the entire refinance process (with related closing costs, etc) and qualify on their own merit to assume the loan on their own. (And assuming there is equity in the home, they might have to buy out the other person’s portion of the equity.) If the person cannot qualify on their own, then I think the other 2 options are (1) sell the home and split the proceeds or (2) the parties agree that one person lives in the home until a future date and then the house is sold and you split the proceeds. But for Option (2) the person who has moved out has to understand that it’s likely that they would not qualify to buy a home on their own since their name is still on the mortgage for the jointly-owned home. So they might have to rent for the time until the house is sold and they are released from the mortgage. Hope that helps a little…


NC_Resident is correct. It’s not a simple process to remove your name from the mortgage. You should work towards a full settlement of the marital estate, and include provisions for how your spouse must refinance to remove your name and get your equity in the house. It’s best to settle these matters before separating, but if you are in fear, you may have no choice but to move out without a settlement and without your name off the mortgage.


Separation and division of assets is not an easy process. If you don’t plan to hire an attorney to help you with the separation then you will find Rosen Online a useful resource. We have huge library of sample documents available, and are available to help your through the process or representing yourself.

You can find more information here:

Please let us know if you have any other questions.


Also, we have a webinar on DIY legal representation coming up Thursday afternoon. You can register here: