If you are the sole contract-holder then you have the right to stay in the home. However, your spouse or civil partner could try to establish rights to the property as well. In most cases, if you leave the home, your occupation contract will end.
If you and your partner decide that the person who is not the contract-holder should stay in the home, then in some cases the contract can be assigned. This means the contract is transferred into their name. If you want to consider this, speak to your landlord. If they do not agree, get help. It may be possible for a court to use family law to transfer the occupation contract (see below).
If you want to end the contract, you can give notice to your landlord. The notice must be valid, To find out how to give notice correctly, see our advice about ending an occupation contract.
The courts sometimes have the power to transfer an occupation contract from the sole contract-holder to the non-contract-holder. In some cases, the court will order compensation to be paid to the partner who leaves the home if they consider that person has lost out financially because of the transfer. Occupationcontracts can only be transferred to the non-contract-holder through the court if:
- you and your partner divorce or dissolve your civil partnership, or
- for the good of any children you might have.
You will need advice from a family law solicitor about making an application to court for a transfer of occupation contract.