This topic is for you if you are divorcing, or your relationship with your partner is ending. If you leave the family home, unless violence is involved, you may lose your right to homelessness assistance - contact the Homelessness team (number below) for advice.

The law

Family law provides the legal framework that regulates responsibilities and rights between couples and between children and their parents. The Family Law (Scotland) Act 2006 covers:

  • the rules regulating divorce
  • parental responsibilities and rights for fathers
  • protection against domestic abuse
  • safeguards for cohabiting couples and their children.

You should seek legal advice if you are separating, whether or not you are legally married, or regardless of whether you have any children.

Voluntary signing over of a Council tenancy

If you can agree that the remaining partner should have the sole tenancy of a Council property without going to court, please see the topic in the 'Help for Council Tenants' section.

Where Violence is Involved

If you are experiencing, or have experienced domestic violence, and need to find a place of safety, you should either contact Women's Aid (who should be able to place you in a refuge - choose Midlothian Women's Aid) or the Council's Housing Options Team, who are at: Brunton Hall Ladywell Way Musselburgh EH21 6AF. Call 01620 827536 Out of Hours Emergency Telephone: 0800 169 1611 Email:

Useful links

A topic with support information for those experiencing domestic violence is available. 
Click on the link to access the Citizen Advice Scotland's advice guide on Relationship Breakdown and Housing. 
Click to access the Scottish Courts website, which explains how Courts work