My wife and I have been separated for 4 months.
I have solely owed my house for 20 years but it was the the matrimonial home for 3 years.
Can I legally changed the locks? I only want to change them while I am out if town for a week
As it was the family home, your wife has a right of entry into the property. Normally where one party is still residing in the former family home, entry would be via mutual agreement. If agreement can''t be made, and the locks have been changed without agreement, she could use reasonable force to enter the house - however it is a criminal offence for someone to break into a property when another person is inside who opposes them entering.
Can you change the locks? If you do, you will need to make a set of keys available for your wife should she request them.
As you cannot really protect yourself may I suggest that you put passcodes on any computers etc and hide any documentation that could be used in a divorce case against you or that could damage your finances . ie internet banking etc because it could look as if you had transferred money.
My x entered the property and raided my computer for financial info etc which included my business records, contacts etc.
She then craftily rearranged the files to show which ones had been opened by me before I went away. She also got passwords.
Funnily enough she actually got the wrong figures !!
Of course I wasn't allowed access to her business records on her computers .
We have been apart nearly 2 years and he only recently gave me back the front door key when I asked for it during mediation. This was mainly brought about because we went away and came back to find that he had stayed in the house without us knowing and not asked. The kids were really unsettled as they 'knew' that someone male had been in the house. Previously now and again things would go missing in the house and I knew that he had been there.
Yesterday he just helped himself to the back door key without asking and when confronted said that his solicitor had advised him to do so as he still had rights to the house.
Not sure what I can do about it but it does make us feel very uncomfortable and unclean if that makes sense like I'd been burgled.