My husband leftand took off in my car, does he have any legal right to it?

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My husband leftand took off in my car, does he have any legal right to it?

I ‘ve been married since 11/10. Husband left me 3 weeks ago for an ex. He left in a car titled/registered/financed in my name without my permission. Car purchased before the marriage. He believes he has a right to it as he gave me the $1000 downpayment (before we were married), but I paid all payments on it since then and it’s in my name. I want it out of my name and have contacted the lienholder to do so. I don’t know where he is living now, the lienholder has requested that I report it stolen. Does he have any right to it? I gave him opportunity to finance it himself but he doesnt want to.

Asked on February 27, 2011 under Family Law, New York

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

You need to go and seek legal help as soon as you can.  There can be a problem with reporting the car stolen and a whole host of issues with the insurance so I would hesitate about doing that at this point in time.  Generally speaking any property or assets that were purchased prior to the marriage are separate property.  But here was there an intent that it be joint?  He gave you the down payment.  Was it a gift?  When before you were married?  All these questions will play a part in the answer to your question but you need to get legal help as soon as possible with this all.  Good luck to you.


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