Can my wife change the locks on our apartment?

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Can my wife change the locks on our apartment?

We had a fight so I went to a family members for a couple of weeks and while I was gone she told the landlord that I moved out which I didn’t, my stuff is still there and wanted him to change the locks. Then she told me she didn’t want me to be able to come in their anytime and get my things.

Asked on June 8, 2017 under Family Law, Indiana

Answers:

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

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

Unless and until you have either a formal separation agreement or final decree of divorce which stipulates who gets possession of the premises, it is still considered to be the "joint marital residence". This means that you both still have the right to occupy it. This is true regardless of whose name is on the lease. Accordingly, your wife cannot simply change the locks. You'll need to inform your landoird of this and have them give you a key and/or take your wife to court.


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