What are my rights if I have been granted an exclusive possession order and my husband is violating it?

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What are my rights if I have been granted an exclusive possession order and my husband is violating it?

I’ve been separated for 1 year and had a temporary protection from abuse order. As a result I have an “Exclusive Possession of Property” order. However, my husband will not stop coming to the residence although he is not welcome. His name is still on the house. The police can not help. I would like to move. Is that OK? Will I be in contempt of exclusive possession order?

Asked on September 21, 2010 under Family Law, Pennsylvania

Answers:

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

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Listen, you have to do what ever it is that you believe will keep you the safest in your situation without violating the law yourself.  It is horrible that the police will not help you with a protection order in place but every time he violates it you have to file a complaint, even if they give you a hassle about it.  Make them come out and record the time and date and the police officers that responded.  As the the exclusive possession order, that means that for the time being you can change the locks, kick him off, etc.  Moving, although it sounds like it may help, may not if all he wants is to be in your face rather than on the property itself.  If it is the property he wants then go back to court and allow the court to amend the temporary order and award him exclusive use and occupancy as well as maintenance of the place.  Make sure he pays the mortgage or rent, utilities, etc., and maybe even close accounts in your name and open them in his.  Get legal help here.  Good luck.


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