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Zoey_ JD
Zoey_ JD, JustAnswer Criminal Law Mentor
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 26828
Experience:  Admitted to NYS Criminal defense bar in 1989. Extensive arraignment, hearing, trial experience.
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CRIMINAL LAW: I commute between Los Angeles and Greensboro,

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I commute between Los Angeles and Greensboro, NC. On my most recent trip to LA on Feb 20, 2013, with my girlfriend (we had lived together 5 years), she and I had an argument. I returned once to LA on March 20th and was welcomed into the house by my girlfriend and her mom and dad. I bought the house in LA in August 2011. Since this time, I quit claim deeded the house to the parents and at present my girlfriend's parents exclusively are on the deed. I plan to return to LA next week and retrieve my clothes and other belongings that are mine (ie I paid 100% of cost of the belongings I will retrieve--of course, I will not take anyone's clothes, personal items, important documents, etc even if I did pay for them). The parents will not be there (the house will be empty), and I plan on retrieving these items then. I still have the key and have never been notified that I am unwelcome. The parents adore me (a language barrier prevents almost all communication through language). I will go without the knowledge of the parents. The reason being that I plan on "breaking up" with my girlfriend (she wants to work it out), and I do not want to encounter my girlfriend while I am there. Is this legal?

thank you very much

If not legal, please advise me how I can make it legal.
Hello Jacustomer,

No. Entering the premises without permission or authority from the owners is criminal trespass. Do anything while in there to which they object and it bumps up to a residential burglary. Even though, for example, you only plan on taking what belongs to you, if some of that property is in any way debatable, they could charge you with the more serious crime.

The fact that her folks adore you notwithstanding, you'd be amazed at how quickly your girlfirend's parents can turn on you once you hurt their daughter.

I'd ask permission and ask the police to come with you on that date, so they can witness that you have absolutely no intentions of provoking an incident of any kind while you are over there.

I know what you want to do, but without permission, it's simply not legal.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

perfect. this is exactly the type of information that helps me.


follow up: I will arrange for an officer to come with me. Am I required to bring a Ukrainian translator?



Hi Jeffrey,

If you get permission in advance you won't need a translator. If you know someone who speaks Ukranian, it might be very helpful, but no, you would not be required to bring one.

Make sure the police know that the parents don't speak much English and see how they want to handle it. The point is that you want to avoid any emotional scene and the police can act as your witness that whatever you did at the house was on the up and up.

Police routinely will assist this way when there is a protective order. I don't see why they wouldn't assist here if what you're afraid of is the situation getting volatile.

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