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Can he do this...?


tigger01

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I have separated from husband and am starting divorce proceedings. I am no longer sleeping at the marital home but do return during the day to see the children, make sure that they have clothes ironed etc and to take/pick up the youngest from school. I also work close to the home. The house is in joint names (on mortgage). Can he change the locks? Can he say I cannot come in to the house? And if he does change the locks what can I do?

Thanks

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Yes, he can change the locks. He can do anything he wants. Is it LEGAL to do so? No. Is it LEGAL for you to break in? YES.

 

This is why I say there is no such thing as an amicable divorce.

 

I left my marital home and my husband locked me out. My attorney's advice? "Break a window". She said it was "best not to get the police involved". Just break a window, and if the police show up, show them the deed to your house.

 

It's unBELIEVABLE.

 

My advice to you is to get a lawyer. Get your things out of there before HE gets a lawyer and he establishes "residency". Once he does that, meaning the maritial home is established as HIS residence, you will NOT be able to have access to it.

 

Good luck. I wouldn't wish what you're going through on my worst enemy having just been down that road (minus the children) myself.

 

~Allie

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Hi Tigger

 

Well, he is not supposed to deny you access to the house but as you are in the UK, and he wanted to be awkward he could claim someone tried to break in so wanted to change the locks for security (and not give you a set). The police over here don't like to get involved in domestic disputes so I think your only course of action would then be to apply to the court.

 

How old are your childen?

 

What do you see the plans further down the road with regard to who will live where and who the children will spend most of their time with? What are the current arrangements with regard to the children? Who looks after them on the whole on a day to day basis?

 

I would stronly advise that you do not move out, as unpleasant as it may be right now. And I would stronly advise that you seek the advice of a good solictor ASAP.

 

Is the plan that one or other of you buys the other one out of your current house?

 

At the end of the day, the primary carer (the person who does most of the day to day stuff with the children) would be given priority of a roof over their head for the security of the children. Who is the "primary carer would you say? Sounds like it is you.

 

I agree from your other thread that he is acting this way out of anger and denial and it is to be expected. However, poisining the children against you and acting the way he is is totally unnacepptable.

 

See a solicitor asap. You can often get starter sessions at very reduced rates and you could go and see 2 or 3 and make use of that advice. Take someone with you to take notes if possible. And when you do appont a solicitor, keep your questions with them completely about the business at hand - you are not paying them as a shoulder to cry on, so make sure you have a list of pertinant questions written down.

 

Hope this is of some help.

 

Mark

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Never leave the home first, as the spouse can then charge you with abandonment.

 

So you should move back in and petition the court for the house. The judge will then decide if one person will move out and which one. Usually the person who is granted temporary custody of the children is the one who is granted access to the house.

 

But until the judge makes an order as to who gets possession of the house, he is not legally allowed to deny you access.

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I am from England.

 

I ask these questions because when I came home the other day from picking my youngest up from school I noticed that he had started to add an extra lock on the back-door (one what can't be opened unless I have a key for it). That's my only point of entry into the house as he locks the front-door from the inside when he goes to work.

 

I am staying with my mum for the time being and was also wondering whether I would relinquish my rights to go back there and live in a couple of weeks when everything, in theory, should've died down.

 

I really don't know what's best at the moment. I am putting a few people out by not staying at the marital house (as my mum lives miles away from my everyday necessities). Should I let him get used to the fact that I am divorcing him and then go back and try to live civilly up until the divorce is finalized and the house is sold/bought out? Or should I stay away and make things easier on him by doing that?

 

I also know I am asking again but what could/should I do if I come home through the day and find that he has locked the new lock and I can't enter the house?

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Hi again Tigger

 

You really need to move back in as soon as possible. Also, demand a key from him for the new lock - you have just as much right to be there as he does.

 

And you MUST consult a solicitor asap.

 

It might also be useful for you to keep a diary of events for you to look back on, should this turn really ugly.

 

Oh, I forgot to say - you mentioned that you are both on the mortgage, but are you both on the title dees?

 

Mark

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I have already started a diary of things he's done.

 

Both our name's are on the title deeds and my name is on the house. He does, however, pay the mortgage himself.

 

Do you think its a good idea me moving back in? He's vile to me and he's seemingly brain washed the kids to be horrible to me. I am also scared that he will hurt me.

 

Thanks Mark.

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8, 13 and 15.

 

He hasn't shown physical violence but his behaviour is very worrying. Just a few days ago he punched the bathroom door when I was on the other side and he's telling the 13 year old I don't love her. God knows what he's telling them when I am not there. And he's changing locks on the door and garage (the latter he's already done and the former he's in the process of doing). I also know that he goes to see my dad a few times a week and is telling him lies about what's going on, and he's making my mum worry but constantly phoning her.

 

Do you think it's a good idea to write him a letter saying I will be back in around 7-10 days and tell him some ground rules (i.e. bathroom times and so forth). I don't know if it's best to let him simmer down and get used to the idea first or whether just to move back and stick it out, or stay there just a few nights a week and see how it goes.

 

But he's making me feel sick how he's behaving.

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As long as he is not physically abusive and you are not afraid to be injured physically, I would move back in.

 

You are better off moving back in, filing for divorce, and asking for residency in the house with the kids than moving out. If you move out and he files to keep the kids and the house (on grounds of abandonment) it may be harder for you to get back in.

 

The problem is that he can allege you abandoned not just him, but the kids, which the judge may look on unkindly. (i.e., if he is beastly enough for you to leave him, then you shouldn't be leaving the kids behind to 'save' yourself and not them).

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Hi Tigger

 

What is he saying to your parents? Why are they not fighting your corner and setting him straight and that he cannot behave this way.

 

Don't bother writing a letter, but do move back in NOW. Apart from anything else, you can reassure your children that you do love them, just by you being there. I would sit the older ones down and have a chat with them. Reassure them that this has nothing to do about your love for them and that sometimes people fall out of love with one another but that it doesn't mean you love them any less.

 

Get that key from him - and get that legal advice. Really, I mean it. I know it may seem easier on everyone if you run away from the situation, but that is not going to achieve anything. You must have an action plan here.

 

Mark

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So you would recommend me moving back in? If I left it for a week but let him know I would be back and he legally can't stop me from staying then would that be a good idea? I really don't wanna go back just now because I want him to get used to the fact that we are over and that we are getting divorced. But would moving back in gradually be better? Like staying a few days a week and then weening myself to more as time goes by?

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Tigger

 

I really would move back in as soon as you can - that is just my advice to protect your interests. It may be unpleasant for a while but nobody said that this would be easy and you have to accept that your decision to divorce carries some fallout.

 

Mark

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Tigger

 

He has not shown any phhysicall violence towards you before so I think it is very unlikely he will start now. Him punching that door was him taking out his frustrations on the situation.

 

So far as being locked out, I would cross that bridge if it happens. But I wouldn't keep putting the idea in his head by telling him he is not allowed to do that. But you need to ask for a key to that new lock too.

 

Oh - I am assuming that this is really a done deal, by the way. Did you try going to counselling? It does sound like your mind is made up but I thought I would ask.

 

Mark

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Yeah my mind is completely made up. We was together for 23 years and during the last few years I just realised that I didn't love him like I did before (a lot has happened so I won't divulge into that too much). But it is over. I can't stand to be around him at all, but my life would be made easier if I lived there (the kids and work).

 

But thanks for the advice.

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Tigger

 

So move back in pronto, ok? Try to keep things as amicable as possible - I know it won't be easy. But there will come a time where you two need to sit down and discuss the logistics of this. Maybe with a bit of time he will become more accepting of the situation.

 

Have you thought about the logistics of all of this? Do you have much equity in your house? At the end of the day you will each need to have somewhere to live and to have the children to stay. You really need to start thinking about this.

 

And - get legal advice PLEASE!!

 

Mark

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I have got legal advice through the CAB but can't get another appointment with them for the time being. We will have to attend a mediation thing were we will discuss who gets what but I assume that will be in a few weeks as I have only recently started divorce proceedings against him.

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Hi again Tigger

 

Can I ask you what CAB advised? Can you afford to instruct your own solicitor? Sorry to pry, but it is important. You can always PM if you don't want to post it on the open forums.

 

Mediation can be really good provided you both go into it with a flexible mind. I have attended 2 different sorts of mediation and both lots were cancelled by the mediators because my ex would give any rope.

 

Hope this is some help. Hang in there!

 

Mark

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