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Divorce & Family Law This forum is for discussing any of the legal issues involved in your divorce.

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  #1  
Old 05-18-2011, 01:00 PM
Teddie Teddie is offline
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Default Ex Won't Divide Property in the Home

So, a quick run down of facts before my questions:
- separated last July
- I left the marital home in September after being falsely arrested for spousal assault....never charged, no court order barring me from the home
- we signed an interim custody and access arrangement in December 2010 for 50/50 access and joint custody.

So, custody and access have been settled on an interim basis and I have been contributing my share towards the bills associated to the marital home and daycare costs in lieu of child support until the sale of the home which is now sold and closes to the new owners mid June.

I have been requesting access to the home for months but my ex changed the locks and moved her boyfriend in. I have gone with police once to collect my clothes as she would not voluntarily give them to me.
I closed on a new house today and I am moving in with nothing. My wife refuses to agree to a division of items in the home; no matter how generous I am she refuses anything I propose. I have asked her to counter offer with a list of items she wants and she continues to ignore the issue. My lawyer has asked that I am permitted into the home to take an inventory as I have not been in the home for almost 9 months and can easily forget all that is inside. Her lawyer agreed that I could attend with a witness of her choosing present. The witness has specified what days she is available to attend the home with me but my ex has gone back to ignoring me and never responds when I try to make arrangements. Her lawyer has also started to ignore my lawyer and I.

My concerns are:
- I have been without any items from my home other than clothes for close to 9 months; my new home is empty.
- My ex is clearly trying to drag this on until the home closes to the new owners. I really think she is planning on taking everything with her.
- The police will escort me to the home but the problem is, if she is home she can decide not to answer the door. If she is not home the police will not allow me to break in. The locks were changed so I have no key.
- I firmly believe that she is afraid to let me in because I will see that many items have been removed from the house without my consent.

Some people are telling me to walk away but I put a lot of money into that home less than two years ago. It was a brand new home and I furnished it with brand new items that cost a lot of money. After being drained by the legal system, paying penalties for breaking a mortgage, and having to buy a new home again....I can't afford to start from scratch and I shouldn't have to.

What would you do in this situation?

I am contacting the police this afternoon to see if she can be charged with theft if she removes everything from the home on the date of closing.

Thanks
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Old 05-18-2011, 01:20 PM
Teddie Teddie is offline
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I just spoke with the police and they will not do anything if she decides to take everything with her when she moves out....I couldn't believe it. They told me that unless there is an agreed division of property in writing, they will not enforce anything. It looks like it's all up to my lawyer and another it will be more money out of my pocket.
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Old 05-18-2011, 02:53 PM
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NBDad NBDad is offline
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Your lawyer should be filing a motion to have you granted access to take inventory and to finalize division of property and equalization. The property in the home would fall under that.

Give your lawyer a list of things you would like out of the home and tell him to get his ass before a judge and get a court order granting you the right to remove those items and/or to compel your ex to allow access.

Also, because there is no court order...wait until she is NOT home, then call a locksmith to open the place up. I assume your name is still on the title/mortgage? It's a dirty move, but totally legal if she doesn't have an order granting her exclusive rights.

Otherwise, show up on moving day with a video camera and tape everything coming out of the place.
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Old 05-18-2011, 03:48 PM
winterwolf7 winterwolf7 is offline
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If it's your house and your name on the deed, you should be able to do whatever you want to your own property. When I was put in the situation, the police came, checked my ID as proof that it was my legal residence, and basically told my ex to her face that if my ex didn't give me the key I had every legal right to break down the door and change the locks to get back inside.
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Old 05-18-2011, 04:40 PM
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billm billm is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by winterwolf7 View Post
If it's your house and your name on the deed, you should be able to do whatever you want to your own property. When I was put in the situation, the police came, checked my ID as proof that it was my legal residence, and basically told my ex to her face that if my ex didn't give me the key I had every legal right to break down the door and change the locks to get back inside.
Maybe then you should just go there when you know they are away, and take what is yours.
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Old 05-18-2011, 05:15 PM
today today is offline
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you may very well have to go and hep yourself, when she is away. I had a court order with Police presence and she still refused with video camera running and Police refused to do anything even with court order in place with date and how division would proceed (each alternating chosing one item at a time until all was divided)

Was resolved once we offered judge her statement on video stating my lawyer told me I don't have to do this is I don't want to. Oddly enough that resolved the matter, however there is a cost associated with this and you need to decide if you want to take it there...
  #7  
Old 05-19-2011, 10:11 AM
Teddie Teddie is offline
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I think a motion may take too long considering the new owners are taking possession soon. I have been told it could take around 30 days to get it passed.

See right now her and her lawyer know that she can move everything out of the home as the police will not charge her with theft unless there is a signed division of assets that she is violating. So, they are content to ignore me. If those items leave the home I will be lucky to ever see any of the contents again.

I like the idea of bringing the locksmith; it is a prick move but I have been treated like a criminal for almost 9 months now and it looks like it may be my only move.

I will be contacting a locksmith. Are they able to simply pick a lock or do they usually have to destory it to get into the home?
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