What is Exclusive Occupation of the Home?

If someone is given exclusive occupation, this means they have the sole right to live in the designated home, residence or rental unit, like an apartment. The other person, who is not granted exclusive possession, must leave.

Exclusive occupation is usually a temporary right given to a person to live in the property until something else happens in the future - for example, until the house is sold, or some specified future event happens. Granting exclusive occupation does not affect either person’s interest in the home, residence, or rental unit. In this case, 'interest' means:

  • the right to make a legal claim in relation to the home, or

  • the right to own the home or share in the proceeds of the home, if it is sold, or on a final division of assets.

An application for exclusive occupation can be made to the court if you are asking to be the only party who is allowed to live in your house or residence. Former common law couples can also agree to this arrangement in the terms of a separation agreement.

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