If after 9 months of cheating on me, my husband of 21 years left can I get the locks changed on our house and prohibit him from entering?

He signed a lease on an apartment and left 4 days ago. Since he did not take all his stuff, can I donate it? We tried counseling but he just couldn’t stop seeing the woman.

Asked on October 6, 2015 under Family Law, Pennsylvania

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

No, you cannot prohibit your husband from entering your house by changing the locks or by any other means. The fact is that whether or not he has cheated on you and even moved out into an apartment, you must allow him entry. This is because until there is a court order e.g. divorce decree, formal separation agreement, etc. that determnes who has the exclusive use of the property, it remains the marital residence. Accordingly, your husband has equal rights to the the house, regardles of whose name is or isn't on the deed. To prevent him from entering can land you in legal trouble so don't do it as tempting as it may be.
Note If he has put you in fear for your safety the police can remove him if there is an immediate threat, otherwise you can go to court and get a protective order.


IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.