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Can my husband take the car away from me and the kids?

El Cajon, CA |

I've been married for 5 years, but my husband and I have been separated for 2 years now. We have 2 cars that are both in his name. However, I've been driving one and paying for the maintenance, registration, and insurance. It's my only transportation to and from work and for driving the kids to school.

Now he is threatening to take the car from us. We are not legally separated and we have not even begun the process of divorce. I just want to know, is there any way I can keep the car and does he have the right to take it from me just like that ?

Attorney Answers 1


If the car is registered in your husband's name, it will be difficult to prevent him from physically taking it away from you without a court order. It would appear that the time has now come for you to start those divorce proceedings, and in that context, you can go into court and ask for an order that you be given the exclusive use and possession of that vehicle.

If the car was purchased during the marriage, I can assume it is community property, which means you already own half of it whether your name is on title or not (there are a lot of possible exceptions to the statement I just made, but for these purposes we can go with that). You really should discuss this matter further with an experienced family law attorney. Good luck.

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