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WARNING: HOMESTEAD EXEMPTION CAN BE LOST IN DIVORCE TRANSFER OF MARITAL HOME

Almost every divorce involves either the transfer of ownership or use of the marital home. What most people don’t know is that the transfer of either title or use of the marital home triggers a loss of homestead exemption and they need to reapply. See: Miss. Code Ann Section 27-33-31. [link]. Divorcing persons and divorce attorneys should be aware of this provision.

Loss of the homestead benefit can be prevented by filing a new application for the exemption as soon as the change in ownership or use takes place. Note: this loss can occur with the simple act of one of the spouses moving out! I am informed the tax assessor’s office has several ways to detect changes in occupancy, so don’t assume your change will not be noticed by the taxing authority.

(Special thanks to excellent loan closing attorney, Jay Cooke, of Jackson, Ms for alerting me to this unknown danger).