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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
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Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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Me ex has left our apartment and is with someone else. At first

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Me ex has left our apartment and is with someone else. At first we shared our Boston terrier but when I suggested a signed rota it was verbally agreed but he wouldn't sign it and for the last 6 weeks I have been denied access to Alfie. Most of the paperwork is in my ex name. At the moment I'm still paying Alfie''s insurance. It's all very distressing. Can you help
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Clare replied 10 months ago.
HiThank you for your questionMy name is***** shall do my best to help you but I need some further information first Whose name is ***** ***** chip registered in?
Expert:  Jo C. replied 10 months ago.
HI. I have been asked to look at this. Who purchased him? To whom is he microchipped?
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
My ex paid for Alfie but ive paid for everything else such as insurance and vets costs etc the microchip is in my ex name but registered to my address. Weve been sharing Alfie for the last few months but now he wont let me see him and its very distressing
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Thats about it really. Was just hoping we could carry on sharing him week on week off.
Expert:  Jo C. replied 10 months ago.
Thank you. There is no prospect of that I’m afraid. However much our dogs mean to us, they are property in law. There is no application you can make for contact with a dog. You can seek a declaration of ownership from the county court and a consequent possession order. However, then the court would consider who owns this dog. From what you have described the risk exists that the decision would be that he is a joint asset of the relationship and that the order should be that he be sold and the proceeds divided between you. That is an order that nobody wants. That said, I suppose it may encourage negotiation between you as the likely order is unattractive to both sides. Can I clarify anything for you? Jo
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Hi I could never imagine any judge deciding that any pet be sold and the proceeds divided. I would like to know if I have any chance of sharing Alfie as we did at the start of the break up. The microchip is in his name as I said but registered at my address where Alfie has been since we brought him home. How would this be viewed by a judge? Do I have any chance if it went to court?
Expert:  Jo C. replied 10 months ago.
There is no chance of doing that for the reasons I explained.What will happen is that there will be an order that he be sold and the proceeds divided between you.
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
surely there would be some mediation attempted by any judge with a view to sharing access to Alfie and if no agreement was reached then the last resort would be the option you have suggested, selling Alfie
Expert:  Jo C. replied 10 months ago.
No. A judge does not and cannot mediate.
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Hi Jo, Just to be absolutely clear, if you had to decide on this would you conclude that because the microchip is in my ex name that Alfie would be his legally. Is that the major sticking point.thanks,Jan
Expert:  Jo C. replied 10 months ago.
No, I would conclude in the way above. From what you have described the risk exists that the decision would be that he is a joint asset of the relationship and that the order should be that he be sold and the proceeds divided between you. That is an order that nobody wants.
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Hi Jo,To conclude then what would you advise me to do for the best outcome. I do not want to start a process that may lead to the possibility that Alfie would be sold, nor am I happy to leave things as they are i.e. not seeing Alfie at all. What would you do in my position.thanks,Jan
Expert:  Jo C. replied 10 months ago.
.
Expert:  Jo C. replied 10 months ago.
It depends really on the risk levels you are happy to face.If you do issue then it might prompt negotiation. However there is a risk that the order could end in that way.
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Hi Jo I think you have sent me the wrong response. My query is about my dog Alfie.thanks,Jan
Expert:  Jo C. replied 10 months ago.
I'm not sure what you mean?
Expert:  Jo C. replied 10 months ago.
It also depends on the reaction you think you would get from your former partner. He will not want Alfie to be sold either and so it is likely that he would want to negotiate.He also probably won't want the cost.
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
You sent a reply about an S8 notice and an S21 notice that does not apply to my query. Its obviously an error. My query is about my dog Alfie. My order ID is 16264696-220thanks Jan
Expert:  Jo C. replied 10 months ago.
Yes, you will see the reply above?
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Would there be a cost in the small claims court
Expert:  Jo C. replied 10 months ago.
It is not a small claims court claim.You could sue I suppose for the sum of money Alfie is worth at the small claims court but that isn't what you want.You need an injunction from the county court. That does cost about £350 all in if you represent yourself.
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Really.......I didnt know that. As you said Alfie is considered property I thought it would come under the small claims court. How do I go about starting the County Court action. Im really scared to start anything as I dont want to be told that I have no legal claims on any access to Alfie. The 350 pounds is ok. I would be happy to pay my ex the whole amount and he could get another puppy and that would be ideal. I would be so happy to have Alfie full time.thanksJan
Expert:  Jo C. replied 10 months ago.
Yes, but the problem is that you wouldn't get that for the reasons I've explained.
Expert:  Jo C. replied 10 months ago.
From what you have described the risk exists that the decision would be that he is a joint asset of the relationship and that the order should be that he be sold and the proceeds divided between you. That is an order that nobody wants.
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
How do I start the court action. Any advice please on how best to go about it.thanks,Jan
Expert:  Jo C. replied 10 months ago.
You can do it at any county court using the N1 forms. They probably have a specialist form for it but I always use the general one.It is probably a good idea to send him a letter before action first warning him of your intention to issue though. I'm happy to continue with this but please rate my answer.
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
If it was decided that Alfie was sold what happens then? Do you know? I mean where would Alfie be sold and would either of us have the opportunity to pay for Alfie. This scenario is too awful to contemplate
Expert:  Jo C. replied 10 months ago.
.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 69775
Experience: Over 5 years in practice
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Expert:  Jo C. replied 10 months ago.
If that does happen then the order would have to be followed. He wouldn't be worth very much on the open market. Dogs are not. They have a value to us that exceeds the sum of money they are worth.Generally speaking it doesn't come to that though because one side or the other agree to withdraw.
Expert:  Jo C. replied 10 months ago.
I suppose one thing he could do is sell to a friend or relative and then buy him back and give you the share to which you are entitled.The trouble is that does mean the non resident owner gets nothing at all.

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