Can I legally move out of state with these dogs that aren't mine on paper?
2 attorney answers
You were given these dogs by your mother and you have cared for these dogs for six years and paid all their expenses and your mother has only come to see them twice. I think it extremely unlikely your mother will take any legal action to seek return of the dogs. Further, six years is a long time and probably long past the statute of limitations for most claims your mother could make. I would agree with Attorney Illmanen's response.
Any answer provided on the AVVO website is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice for your specific situation. You should always seek legal advice before taking any action which may affect your future rights. Your local legal aid office may well provide information or access to free legal advice and your state bar organization may provide referrals to reputable attorneys who will provide advice on a reduced cost basis.
It sounds to me like she abandoned the dogs. I would just move and take them with me if I were you. If she tries to sue you to get them back, countersue her for all your food and vet expenses PLUS 6 years of boarding at $35 per day for each dog.
PLEASE DO NOT PRIVATE MESSAGE ME with followup questions. Instead, you may make a comment below, which will be sent to me automatically. If you need an attorney to assist you, please search in your local area, or click the "Find a Lawyer" link at the top of the page. I am active on AVVO and answer questions only as a public service. I am an Attorney-at-Law, licensed to practice law only in the state of California. Unless we have both signed a formal retainer agreement you are not my client, and my discussion of issues does not constitute legal advice. Opinions expressed herein are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the opinions of those who hold other opinions.