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Clare
Clare, Family Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 34263
Experience:  I have been a solicitor in High Street Practise since 1985 and have specialised in Family Law for the last 10 years
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Access to marital home by estranged wife

Resolved Question:

My wife moved out of the marital home in February 2014, into a rented property.
Since then she has come to the marital home but always with prior warning and agreed time.
However, she has been living with her new Partner for the past couple of weeks.
On Thursday 17 July, we agreed that she could pick her tumble dryer which was being stored in the integral garage at the marital home. She was collecting said item with her new Partner.
She also wished, initially, to take a 4 draw filing cabinet, but decided against this as was not happy with her entering the property and she also realised that it was too heavy for her and her partner to move.
I got back from work at 10.00pm to discover that she had indeed entered the property, gone through some papers, and taken various items from the property without any consultations.
She has now informed me that she WILL be retuning with a removal company sometime next week, to take various other pieces of furniture as she says, she is moving into a new rental property in Hedge End, Southampton.
The property has been sold, but we have not yet exchanged contracts.
My questions are:
1. Do I have any rights to stop her entering the property?
2. Was she entitled to enter the property last Thursday without any firm of consent?
3. Is she entitled to remove various pieces of furniture even though the marital home has yet to be formally sold, that is exchange of contracts??
Thanks
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Nicola-mod replied 3 years ago.
Hello,
I've been working hard to find a Professional to assist you with your question, but sometimes finding the right Professional can take a little longer than expected.
I wonder whether you're ok with continuing to wait for an answer. If you are, please let me know and I will continue my search. If not, feel free to let me know and I will cancel this question for you.
Thank you!
Nicola
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Yes, I am very happy to wait, but will need an answer soon please
Expert:  Nicola-mod replied 3 years ago.
Hello,
We will continue to look for a Professional to assist you.
Thank you for your patience,
Nicola
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Thanks
Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
Hi
Thank you for your question.
My name is Clare
I will do my best to help you but I need some further information first.
For clarity - are you joint owners of the property?
Clare
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Yes, joint and severable
Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
Hi
Have you reached any agreement about how the contents will be shared between you?
Clare
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Only verbal but my real query is can she come into the house and take items without prior warning or agreement??
Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
Hi
Yes I am afraid that as a joint owner she is entitled to do so.
It is no polite and it is not entirely reasonable - but that does not make it illegal
She is entitled to remove items - especially if there has already been discussions/agreements about what you will each have.
It would be sensible to confirm in writing the agreements that you think you have reached regarding contents as soon as possible
Please ask if you need further details
Clare
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Are there any mitigating reasons if she has been cohabiting??
Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
Hi
No not at all I am afraid
Clare
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Are you confirming that because we are joint tenants, have our decree nisi, she moved out in February 2014, that I have no rights to my security or privacy in the house??
Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
Hi
As long as she is a joint owner of the property she is entitled to return there whenever she wishes unless you obtain a Court Order excluding her - either as a result of her violence or as part of the financial settlement.
It is not good manners - but sadly it is legal
Clare
Clare, Family Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 34263
Experience: I have been a solicitor in High Street Practise since 1985 and have specialised in Family Law for the last 10 years
Clare and other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you