When first splitting up, can the spouse who owns the home move the other spouse’s belongings to a storage shed if they give them the key?

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When first splitting up, can the spouse who owns the home move the other spouse’s belongings to a storage shed if they give them the key?

Numerous attempts have been made to let the other get the items out but has made no attempt to do so.

Asked on March 3, 2018 under Family Law, Missouri

Answers:

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

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

Unless and until there is a legal separation agreement in effect or a final decree of divorce has been issued which determines who has the exclusive right to possession, both parties have equal rights to the home that they shared together. Under the law it remains the "joint marital residence". This is true no matter whose name that the deed is in and even if a spoue has moved out. Accordingly, the spouse who remains does not have the right to move the absent spouse's belongings out of the house without permission.

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

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

Unless and until there is a legal separation agreement in effect or a final decree of divorce has been issued which determines who has the exclusive right to possession, both parties have equal rights to the home that they shared together. Under the law it remains the "joint marital residence". This is true no matter whose name that the deed is in and even if a spoue has moved out. Accordingly, the spouse who remains does not have the right to move the absent spouse's belongings out of the house without permission.


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