During a separation prior to filing for a divorce, am I allowed to change the locks on my home after my spouse moves out?

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During a separation prior to filing for a divorce, am I allowed to change the locks on my home after my spouse moves out?

My spouse is moving out and taking up residence with a family member. She is paying rent and taking some furniture with her. Am I allowed to change the locks on the home to prevent her from just coming and going as she pleases when Im not home?

Asked on February 27, 2019 under Family Law, Florida

Answers:

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

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

Unless and until there exists a legal separation agreement or a final decree of divorce that deterimes just which one of you has the exclusive right to occupay the premises, it remains the "joint marital residence". This menas that you both have a right to live there, even if 1 of you has moved out and wants to come back, and no matter whose name the lease/deed is in.

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

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

Unless and until there exists a legal separation agreement or a final decree of divorce that deterimes just which one of you has the exclusive right to occupay the premises, it remains the "joint marital residence". This menas that you both have a right to live there, even if 1 of you has moved out and wants to come back, and no matter whose name the lease/deed is in. 


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