Who Gets the Vacation Home in a Divorce?

vacation home in a divorce

Divorce is tricky enough before you get into assets. But, once you do; the complications aren’t as deep as you might think that they are. A lot of the length of a divorce is time between court dates and waiting for the finalization. The negotiation and decision of who gets what is much faster and easier than it might seem. But, who does get what? How do you know who gets the vacation home in a divorce? And do you really want that asset or should you move on to something that means more to you? There are a few things you want to think about before you commit to an attorney.

Vacation Home in a Divorce: The Divorce Decree

The divorce decree will have a hold over all the properties and matters discussed during the divorce. This holds true in all states, as well as Canada and Mexico. This is because they have similar legal systems to our and they see the document as straightforward.

However, there are some countries with different legal systems, such as China, which would mean you are subject to their laws. The system in that country would then determine who would receive the vacation home. Likely the spouse with the strongest ties to the country. Once the decree has been agreed upon and written, that is the final word on everything.

So, you want to make sure that once things are settled, you are ok with how they are. If there is something that you want to do differently, you have to speak up while you can.

Who and What Determines Who Gets the Vacation Home in a Divorce?

With most assets, there is a process and no exact answer. There is a bias given by the law, depending on the conditions of the property. Such as who purchased it, if they were married, and whose name is it in. After that, it depends on the negotiation process and who actually receives it. There is also the factor of who can afford what and the court will take that into consideration, too.

In many cases, they are sold and the funds are split according to how the court sees fit. Negotiations are usually the best place for determining what you will get, unfortunately, many divorces still have to go to court.

Vacation Home in A Divorce: Previous Agreements

In some cases, previous agreements may be a factor. This is usually something like a prenuptial agreement. If there is one and it dictates ownership of the property, that will be the deciding factor. However, these documents also tend to have stipulations.

For example, it might say that the vacation home belongs to the husband; who owned it before they were married. But, it might also say that in the event of infidelity he loses it and it becomes the wife’s property. There are very few reasons for a prenuptial agreement to be voided, so this tends to be the determining factor.


Attorneys in these cases make all the difference. Having someone who doesn’t care about your case or doesn’t know what they are doing can cause a lot of problems for you. It can even cost you actual money. The last thing you want is to pick someone who doesn’t have experience or has never worked with a case like yours before. This is a very dangerous risk to take and will almost certainly end up costing you dearly. You want to make sure that they have dealt with numbers, assets, and complications similar to yours. Someone who has had experience in divorce isn’t necessarily the right attorney for you. They will need to know what your case needs and how to win it. And you want to make sure that they are a strong voice in court, as they will be representing you.

Vacation homes in a divorce can be a very complex issue, like most assets. However, they are managed the same as other assets would be and aren’t more work or problems. If you are going through a divorce, you want to talk to your attorney about the assets you have and how they foresee the division playing out. They will be able to give you a better idea, knowing the details of your case. You will want to make sure that you find the one who gives you the best answer and whom you have the most confidence in. They will be your voice to the court and in negotiations, so you want to make sure that you trust them. For more information on marital property division or contact the Law Office of Susan T. Perkins, Esq.