How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Harris Your Own Question
Harris
Harris, Law Specialist
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 2739
Experience:  Family Law - Specialist in Divorce, Financial Relief and Children Matters
90234221
Type Your Law Question Here...
Harris is online now

My girlfriend and her husband have been separated 7 years.

Customer Question

My girlfriend and her husband have been separated 7 years. They have joint ownership of her home here in England and his home in Hong Kong. Even though he owns half the house in England he has never lived here. She has lived here with their children since it was purchased.
Question is does he have any right to live in to her house or can she refuse him entry?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Harris replied 1 year ago.
Hi, thank you for your question. Legally, as the property is in joint names he will have a legal interest in it and a right to live there unless there is a court order preventing him returning. Have they not divorced and settled the financial matters?If you found this information helpful so far please provide a positive rating. I will not be credited for answering your question without a positive rating. Thank you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
He cannot return as he has never lived there. He is an owner of the property not a resident of it. Are you sure your answer is correct because to me it seems you have mis read the details.
Expert:  Harris replied 1 year ago.
It does not matter if he has not lived there - the property is also in his name and this gives him a legal interest in the property which includes a right to live there unless there is a court order preventing him from returning.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
The word 'returning' is confusing in your reply. So to prevent him destroying her life she has to make a legal case against him? There has been no divorce or financial settlement at this time. Does this mean we have the right to live in his Hong Kong house too? Also as I live here what are my rights as her partner? Can he just throw me out?
Expert:  Harris replied 1 year ago.
I am not aware of the law in Hong Kong, but as that property is also jointly owned between them she would have a legal interest in it and it would be likely that Hong Kong law would allow her to live in that property, except if there is a court order preventing her.Unfortunately, you have no rights to the property, both legal or beneficial despite being in a relationship with her. English law does not recognise cohabitation as raising a legal interest in property unless there is a formal agreement or deed of trust between you and the owners, creating an interest in the property. Legally he can ask you to leave the property upon reasonable notice.If your partner wishes to deal with the assets and protect her occupation of the property she should consider pursuing a divorce, and a financial settlement thereafter. She should also consider applying to court for an occupation order, which will exclude the husband from the property, but she will need to clearly outline to the court why this is necessary - such as displacement and disruption of her and the children's accommodation if he were to attempt to occupy the property.I hope this provide further clarification about this issue. I appreciate that the answer may not be what you had hoped for and I note you have provided a negative rating, but if you found this information useful please do provide a positive rating.
Harris and 3 other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you very much. My initial rating was based on the wording of your first response. It came across as though you had not fully grasped the facts I had stated.
I am satisfied and thank you for your time. Your rating for this information will be 5*
Expert:  Harris replied 1 year ago.
Thank you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
You're information was wrong. He cannot force me to move out as I am a guest of Helens.
Expert:  Harris replied 1 year ago.
Thanks but I do not agree. You may be her guest, but he also has a legal interest in the property and can force you out if it came to you, despite you being in a relationship with the other joint owner.