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Im going through some trouble seeing my dog after we split…

Customer Question
Im going through some...

Im going through some trouble seeing my dog after we split up. I think i need a pet custody atty.

Lawyer's Assistant: What steps have you taken? Have you filed any papers in family court?

No, this just happened this AM. She asked me not to see our dog anymore. Shes in a different county than me... where do i file, and what do i file ?

Lawyer's Assistant: Family law varies by state. What state are you in?

Rochester, New York

Lawyer's Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?

Yes, she mentioned any contact w her wpuld be considered harrasment. I gave her the cash for the dog, but she filled out the paperwork... she is chipped in both of our names

Submitted: 5 months ago.Category: Family Law
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3/25/2018
Family Lawyer: Legal Eagle, Lawyer replied 5 months ago
Legal Eagle
Legal Eagle, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 15,721
Experience: Licensed to practice before state and federal court
Verified

Hello! I am a licensed attorney, admitted to practice in state and federal court. I have a nearly 100% satisfaction rating (click here for more info) so all that means is that you can count on me to help today.

Please keep in mind that our conversation does not include an attorney-client relationship and this is for general information purposes only. What specific questions did you have? I have an idea about your situation, but I don’t want to make any assumptions.

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Customer reply replied 5 months ago
Life was great. We drove 5 hrs to get our little 9 lb dog named Zoey. Since split up i got to see Zoey 1 to 2 times a week for just a couple hours each visit. As of lately im not allowed in her house ( yet thats another story .. i still have a 5x5 ft area of stuff in the basement).. now yesterday we argued, today she said to never see Zoey. Im stressed, hurt i love our little girl
Customer reply replied 5 months ago
What papers do i file for joint custody... we live in seperate counties in new york
Family Lawyer: Legal Eagle, Lawyer replied 5 months ago

I'm sorry to hear about that. Your dog is adorable. Was this a gift to you at all? Did you chip in to pay for or care for the dog?

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Customer reply replied 5 months ago
As mentioned i gave her the cash to buy Zoey... we got her from a rescue shelter. Charissa filled out the paperwork when we got Zoey. I do goto vet appts. She would never let me pay. I do buy food for the dog. The dog is chipped in both of our names.
Family Lawyer: Legal Eagle, Lawyer replied 5 months ago

Interesting. So, generally, custody of pets doesn't work like custody of children. Pets are considered personal property under the law. This means that the court will look to whatever evidence they can find to determine who is the owner of the personal property. If you gave her the cash to buy Zoey, and if you help care for the dog, a court would presume that you have at least partial ownership of the dog. This is coupled with the fact that your name is ***** ***** chip.

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Family Lawyer: Legal Eagle, Lawyer replied 5 months ago

If she is interfering with your right o property, then this to me sounds like a conversion. Conversion occurs when there is a substantial interference with the personal property rights of another. This is possible when either a person is blocking the rights of another’s right to the personal property, even if that person had authority to possess the property, but that right was taken away by the owner (e.g. the owner took away permission from the person currently in possession). Usually, the measure of damages is the fair market value of the property at the time of conversion or a return of the property itself. For example, a vehicle that is worth $4,000 at the time the owner’s access was blocked is likely what a court would award. You may want to consider just writing a formal demand letter advising that the property should be returned ASAP There’s a site that I’ve used in the past where you can find a good template for a demand letter (click here). It only costs $10 and it is way cheaper than litigation.

What other questions did you have for me today that I can help you out with:-)?

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Customer reply replied 5 months ago
If i file for joint custody... where do i go do that ?... how do i do that ?
Family Lawyer: Legal Eagle, Lawyer replied 5 months ago

So, you won't be able to find for joint custody of the pet. Joint custody only applies to children; not animals. You could take my suggestions above. Did you have any questions about that process?

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Family Lawyer: Legal Eagle, Lawyer replied 5 months ago

I want to make sure that you understand the difference between custody and ownership and the steps you need to take.

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Customer reply replied 5 months ago
you mean, i have no rights to see my dog ?... are you kidding me, wow posession really is 9 tenths of law
Family Lawyer: Legal Eagle, Lawyer replied 5 months ago

No, you do. You have the right to see the dog if it's chipped in your name and you gave money for it. Did you see what I had posted for that earlier?

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Customer reply replied 5 months ago
I will look at the form
Customer reply replied 5 months ago
I dont see how the demand letter fits. It talks about demend money for a situation.How would my demand letter look like. I guess i dont understand
Family Lawyer: Legal Eagle, Lawyer replied 5 months ago

Cool.

Did you have any other questions for me today that I could help you with?

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Customer reply replied 5 months ago
Please help describe on the demand letter that i just want to be able to see my dog
What do i writeI demand to see my dog because i gave you cash for zoey. Zoey is chipped in both of our names. What else would i write ?... that i buy food as well ?
Family Lawyer: Legal Eagle, Lawyer replied 5 months ago

Good question. What I would recommend is drafting up a statement of the facts as you know them and then state at least 2-3 reasons, based on the facts, that suggest why you deserve to see the dog. For instance, if you know the date she was chipped, toward the end of the demand letter, stated, "Because she was chipped in my name on X date, I demand that I have access to the dog."

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Family Lawyer: Legal Eagle, Lawyer replied 5 months ago

Hello, it’s been awhile since we connected so I wanted to check in with you to see if you had any further before you rated. If you have any other questions or if there is anything else I can assist you with today. Please reply here and let me know.

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