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Can I change locks?

Castaic, CA |

I caught my husband having an affair and asked him to move out. He has not and stated that he wants to live at home pending divorce. He has not been home in 3 days. Can I change locks?

Attorney Answers 2


  1. You do not say if you own the property where you are living or renting. If you and your husband have joint ownership of community property, you each have equal access to the property. You ask: "can I change the locks?" You certainly have the ability to do that, but you may be required to provide keys to the new locks. You also don't say if there are minor children or not. If there are, children will often give their father access to property after mom has changed the locks. The best way to proceed might be to seek a court order giving you immediate control of the property pending a judgment of dissolution and prohibiting him from returning to the residence. Most courts would only grant such a remedy if there is a danger of domestic violence by the party being excluded. In the absence of domestic violence, such remedies do happen, but they are rare.


  2. No. As much as you might like to the answer is no regardles of who owns the property or whether it is rented. If you wish to exclude him from the property you should bring a motion/OSC for exclsuive possession. This is only usually granted where there is domestic violence.

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