So in 2008 me and my girlfriend decided to rescue a dog from the pound in greenville, north carolina. I ended up paying the 75 dollars the dog cost, and after two days my gf did not want to deal with the responsibility. For almost a year and a half i paid for every vet bill, housed and trained the dog. At the end of the year and a half when the dog was fully trained and obedient my gf started to fall in love with it. She occasonaly paid what little vet bills we had an occasionaly helped purchase food. Fast forward another year and we broke up. Being nice i agreed (not on paper) to share the dog with her. The situation was working out fine until recently my ex sent me a letter saying she was not going to return the dog even after she gave me her word. The letter only contained her home in nc address not her current residence in seattle, washington. Later on a facebook conversation she told me she did not provide her current address so i could not "track her down." After repeated cordial attempts to contact her and work this out rationally she has decided to continually ignore or discuss the situation at all with the full intent on keeping the dog. How do i go about prosecuting her and getting my dog back? I beleive in all senses of the word her "borrowing" the dog has turned into stealing. There was never writteb aggreements for each party, the initail aggreemnet to share was based purely on trust. The dog is registered in my name at my vet in greenville north carolina And i have records of every payment made towards the dog, what little money she spent i am willing to pay back. The main question still stands: How do i get a summons for my ex, how can i get my dog back through court order, what are my options
Country relating to Question: United States
State (if USA): Virginia
Thank you for your question. I will do my best to assist you with your concerns. If you would like me to clarify my answer, I will be happy to do so.To make sure I can assist you, could you let me know in whose name the dog was registered? Was it in your name or hers? Or was it jointly registered?
The dog has been under my name at tenth street animal hospital of greenvile north carolina and my name only.
Registered in my name only
Thank you for your follow-up. Please permit me to respond to each of your concerns in order listed.How do i go about prosecuting her and getting my dog back?You would need to find her first. However I doubt very much the local police will press charges since ownership here is in question (while the pet may be listed under your name, you did give the dog to her, and whether or not she kept the dog longer or not not becomes an issue for the civil courts, not the police). In essence you would need to take her to civil court, claim 'conversion' (theft) under false pretenses, and demand the return of your property. I beleive in all senses of the word her "borrowing" the dog has turned into stealing. There was never writteb aggreements for each party, the initail aggreemnet to share was based purely on trust.That does not help you, I am afraid. If there is nothing in writing, it becomes a 'he said/she said' situation for the courts as to whether or not you gave her the dog for a short period of time, or if you transferred ownership for good. Not trying to state that you cannot win, simply pointing out the defense on the other side. The dog is registered in my name at my vet in greenville north carolina And i have records of every payment made towards the dog, what little money she spent i am willing to pay back. The main question still stands: How do i get a summons for my ex, how can i get my dog back through court order, what are my options The best way is to physically find her, either via a formal search through a private investigator, online, google, facebook, or white-pages, because without knowing where she is, you would not be able to go to court and file against her. Then once you find her, you would need to go to her local courthouse that she lives next to, and file a petition with them for 'conversion' and for 'replevin', which is the return of personal property that belongs to you. You would be able to serve her with your complaint, summon her to court, and explain your side of the story to the judge who would then be able to make a decision. The fact the dog is registered with you is good evidence that you are the rightful owner, but this ultimately will be a 'he said/she said' situation where the judge will end up having to believe one of the parties over the other.
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I feared that this could turn into a he said she said ordeal. Would signitures by people that know the dog is legally mine help? Perhaps if they were present in court? I also have the letter she sent and various conversations on facebook that show her telling me "we cannot share her (the dog) anymore" and " im not returning her" would these narrow down the descrepancies? The converstaion also shows me reminding her that the dog is registerd under my name and that i would inevitably take her to court if she did not return the dog, to which she replied "go ahead and get a lawyer" does this help my case?
Thank you for your follow-up.I feared that this could turn into a he said she said ordeal. Would signitures by people that know the dog is legally mine help?Sorry, no, because that is hearsay. Others cannot 'know' to whom the dog belongs to, they only have your word that the dog is yours. Having people present who can attest that the other person admitted to them that the dog is NOT hers but yours would be admissible, as that is a statement against interest. Perhaps if they were present in court?Not a bad idea but see above, if they are simply stating what you told them, that is hearsay and not admissible. I also have the letter she sent and various conversations on facebook that show her telling me "we cannot share her (the dog) anymore" and " im not returning her" would these narrow down the descrepancies?Not quite, it simply shows ownership as divided. That would make her as much of an owner as you, and one owner can take over full ownership of something they own a share in. The converstaion also shows me reminding her that the dog is registerd under my name and that i would inevitably take her to court if she did not return the dog, to which she replied "go ahead and get a lawyer" does this help my case? Unless she in that text admits that the dog is not hers, I do not see it helping, you still haven't established that the dog is solely yours.I am sorry.Dimitry Esquire41087.8553934375
How do I prove the dog is soley mine? Every payment fromBoth parties is under my name and my veterians account is under my name and has never been altered or changed
Thank you for your follow-up.To prove ownership examples of payment and registration are both very good pieces of evidence. Beyond that it is up to the judge as to whether or not to believe you since there is no actual bill from a store where you are shown to have purchased the dog yourself.Good luckDimitry Esquire41087.8646919329
JA Mentor, Licensed in PA & NJ, specialize in business/contract disputes, estate creation & admin
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