Application form HR1 for registration of a notice of home rights.
Home rights is the lawful right of a party to remain in the matrimonial home during separation or divorce (under part 4 of the Family Law Act 1996) when the property is owned by the spouse. A party can apply to register their home rights so that the property can not be sold or mortgaged without their knowledge.
Spouses automatically gain matrimonial home rights when married. But it is common that 3rd parties (potential buyers of the matrimonial home) are unaware that these rights are in place. This is because the title deeds of the property do not state anywhere that a spouse has home right to occupy the house. Another common issue is during a separation or divorce is the sole name owner of the matrimonial home sells the property without the spouse’s knowledge meaning they will lose their home.
To stop this from happening the non-owning spouse can register their matrimonial home rights with the land registry for a matrimonial home rights notice. A matrimonial home rights notice is a written notice placed on the title deeds of the house to make sure potential buyers fully understand that a third party ( the non-owning spouse) has the right to occupy the house due to matrimonial home rights.
Potential buyers may not want to buy the property if a matrimonial home rights notice has been put in place. The notice does not grant any new rights as its only purpose is to tell 3rd parties of the already existent rights.
The notice does not grant any new ownership rights to the non-owning spouse.
When the property is registered the land registry will record ownership changes, mortgages or lease changes affecting the property.
There are only 4 ways to remove a home rights notice –
- Death of spouse of civil partner
- Decree absolute or final order to say the marriage is over or the civil partnership has dissolved
- Courts can grant an order to remove the notice
- The spouse who registered the notice consents to it being removed
A matrimonial home rights order should not be used, under any circumstance, for financial gain or to disrupt the process of selling the house. If the notice has been registered for any of these reasons, then a court order can be used to remove the spouses home rights and the notice can be lawfully removed. If the non-owning spouse is attempting to prevent the sale of the matrimonial home but does not live there and does not want to return to the property, then there are other legal ways to prevent the sale of the house rather than a home rights notice.
Here is some notes to help you –