Can an ex-husband throw out his adult children’s belongings?

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Can an ex-husband throw out his adult children’s belongings?

My ex-husband verbally agreed to store my adult sons’ belongings bedroom set and tools in his garage until they move to an apartment in 2 months. Today he notified me that in 2 weeks he will be putting their things out on the lawn. They have nowhere to store these items and have no money at this time for uhaul and storage. Can he legally do this?

Asked on May 18, 2017 under Family Law, Washington

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

If the property in which their  belongings are stored is solely the ex-husband's, he has the right to decide whether he will store anything in it and for how long. He therefore has the right to give  your sons notice that he will not continue to storing their belongings and that they have to either retrieve them or he will put them outside for pick-up and disposal. The fact that the sons may have no place to store them and no money to rent storage, etc. is irrelevant: their need does not give the right to keep their belongings in his property. So he can do this.
If you are also on the title of the property at which the belongings are stored, you could prevent him from doing this: either owner of  property can allow other people to use the property or store things there.


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