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Can I still retrieve personal property after time-frame given in divorce decree?

Atlanta, GA |

Part of my divorce settlement was that I was to retrieve my personal items from the home my spouse was to keep within 21 days of divorce. My ex had placed a protective order against me, therefore I had to contact the Sheriff's Dept in an attempt to have them go with me to get my belongings. They informed me that they have to make contact with my ex as he owned the home in order to get permission and only then can they go with me to get my things. They made attempts, even a few times with me on speaker phone to calling his home phone and left messages. I made every attempt possible and now I am in fear that he has disposed of my things some of which were passed down to me as well as furniture. His atty states that I was in contempt for not retrieving within the timeframe. What can I do?

Attorney Answers 3


  1. Best answer

    Why would talk to his attorney? Don't! Call YOUR attorney, who likely can solve this with a phone call to his attorney, and if not, by you filing a contempt against him for refusing to allow you to get the items in the time frame. Make that call Monday. You should have made it weeks ago.

    If you find this answer helpful, please mark it here on AVVO as helpful. In answering you, I am attempting to communicate general legal information and am not representing you (and am not your lawyer). Do feel free to call me at 404-768-3509 if you wish to discuss actual representation (the phone call also does not retain counsel; that requires an office visit and appropriate paperwork). In that a forum such as this provides me with limited details and doesn't allow me to review details and documents, it is possible that answers here, while meant to be helpful, may in some cases not be complete or accurate, and I highly recommend that you retain legal counsel rather than rely on the answers here. (You can also email my office at geaatl@msn.com . An email also does not retain my office, but can help you get an appointment set if you prefer not to call). I am happy to discuss possible representation with you. Any information in this communication is for discussion purposes only, and is not offered as legal advice. There is no right to rely on the information contained in this communication and no attorney-client relationship is formed. Nothing in my answer should be considered as tax-advice. To ensure compliance with IRS Circular 230, any U.S. federal tax advice provided in this communication is not intended or written to be used, and it cannot be used by the recipient or any other taxpayer (i) for the purpose of avoiding tax penalties that may be imposed on the recipient or any other taxpayer, or (ii) in promoting, marketing or recommending to another party a partnership or other entity, investment plan, arrangement or other transaction addressed herein. Note that I am only licensed in Georgia and thus cannot practice in other states. I am also required to advise you, if your question concerns bankruptcy, that the U.S. Congress has designated Ashman Law Office as a debt relief agency that can help people file bankruptcy.


  2. You can file a petition for contempt for the failure to comply with the court order to allow you to retrieve your items. You should ask for additional time with a date certain the deputies can accompany you to the house or the value of your items. You should do this ASAP (tomorrow). If you don't have an attorney, retain one and obtain affidavits or reports from the Deputies in the Sheriff's Department who called to attempt to retrieve your belongings.

    pmcgill@mcgilllawoffices.com (516)510-0112 (phone) (202)747-2882 (facsimile)


  3. My first thought was you are out of luck. However, because of the order and the attempts made, I'd say you should get your own attorney and file a contempt and ask for attorney fees.

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