I tried to file a police report after finding my estranged husband in my house again and was told that this was a civil, not a criminal matter since we were still married. Therefore, he has every right to come into my house as he pleased since he had once lived there and there is no court order keeping him from the property. Even though none of his belongings are there and he is no longer on the lease, he has his own home. But, if he was driving BY my home he could possibly be cited for harassment or stalking. The officer refused to take a report and stated that any property that I have equally belongs to my husband. And would the valuation date matter here at all? There have been no divorce proceedings initiated yet.
First, there is a presumption that ,if there is a civil remedy at large, criminal action is likely inappropriate. As a result, where there is a question, such as when parties are married, the remedy is civil.
Second, your remedy may be to seek a harassment restraining order to preclude contact you do not desire.
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The police are correct. If there are no divorce proceedings and no court order then there is nothing for the police to enforce (although they often view these matters as "civil" matters even if there are court orders. If the actions are done with the intent or have the effect of adversely affecting your safety, security, or privacy it may be harassment and support a harassment restraining order, but without some type of order awarding you the property he could move back in at any time. You may want to see if the landlord could issue a no trespass notice to him and then the police could arrest him. It might be a long shot, but if he is not on the lease, then the landlord may be able to exclude him from the property. It may be time to start a divorce. Please feel free to call me to discuss. Robert Manson 651-604-0711
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Absent having been served with a notice of trespass or in the absence of a court order preventing him from being on the premises, he has likely broken now criminal laws. However, you may seek a Harassment Restraining Order that would prevent him from being on the property. Also, if you start a divorce case, you could seek a temporary order from the court which would hopefully grant you exclusive use and possession of the premises. Your divorce attorney will likely be able to advise you as to whether you would qualify for a Harassment Restraining Order, though you could also seek one without an attorney if you properly prepare the forms and follow the correct procedure.
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