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Wife and I are separated. Do I have the ability to take her to court to get my personal belongings back?

West Chester, PA |

My wife and I are separated. There are personal belongings of mine at the house that she refuses to give back to me. One of these is a motor vehicle. It's been sitting in the garage now for 2 years. I want it back. Is there a court rule that enables me to 1) force her to give it to me, or 2) make her pay me half of it? Thanks!

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Attorney answers 4

Posted

The process of going through divorce and equitable distribution is the mechanism to resolve these kinds of economic issues. You should sit down with a family law attorney to discuss your specific situation and the rights and remedies available to you.

Posted

Typically one files a motion for that purpose. This requires that a divorce complaint to have been filed.

Asker

Posted

Thanks. I'm working on filling out the motion now. My question goes to precedent or specific stated rule/law. She refuses to give me back the vehicle; she is not licensed to drive it, it is not currently insured or registered, and it would benefit me greatly to be able to use it as my own vehicle has developed problems that make it not financially viable to repair. I can not afford a new vehicle, and I wish to use the vehicle sitting static in the garage. I hope that additional information clears up my inquiry. Thanks!

Brian Edward Sipe

Brian Edward Sipe

Posted

I cannot give you legal advice on this forum, and if I did, it would be worthless. However, you do not always need a "legal argument" in family court. This would most likely fall under the discretion of the court to guarantee equity.

Posted

First, you should retain an experienced family law attorney in your area to discuss your options for retrieving your personal property. Often, with the involvement of the attorneys you will be able to work out an agreement for the vehicles to be distributed. If she does not have an attorney or she refuses to be reasonable, you have other options such as court intervention, but a divorce action needs to be filed. In some counties, the Judge will not get involved in these issues so your attorney will be able to advise you accordingly.

My response is based solely on the limited information contained in the question. It is not meant to substitute your attorney's advice.

Asker

Posted

Hi. Divorce action has been filed, but we're still a long way from the end. I really just want to get my vehicle back as I'm desperately in need of viable, reliable transportation. Thanks.

Posted

Yes, there is way to request that the vehicle or other property be given to you. I recommend that you contact a family law attorney to help you.