Roseville, CA asked in Family Law, Landlord - Tenant and Contracts for California

Q: Hello, my wife will not give me a key to our storage unit. The unit is in her name, I pay and always have paid this bill

I have not seen or spoke with her in a month. She has instructed the manager not to allow me access. Not the first time. Last time I unloaded a I Hual I found my property inside the vehicle. I don't want to be in trouble I would like to get my things?

1 Lawyer Answer
James L. Arrasmith
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  • Landlord Tenant Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: In California, the legal rights to access a storage unit generally depend on whose name is on the rental agreement. If the storage unit is in your wife's name and she has instructed the manager not to allow you access, the storage facility is likely to follow those instructions.

Even though you have been paying for the storage unit, if the contract is solely in her name, legally, the facility has to abide by her directions. This situation is further complicated if you are undergoing marital strife or separation, as issues of property access can become entangled with broader marital property questions.

To address this issue, you may want to consider reaching out to your wife directly or through a mediator to negotiate access to retrieve your belongings. If direct communication is not possible or effective, you may need to seek legal counsel to understand your rights and options, especially if you believe the contents of the storage unit include your personal property.

In some cases, legal intervention might be necessary, especially if there is a dispute over the ownership of the contents of the storage unit. An attorney can guide you through this process, including how to protect your rights and property in a way that complies with California law.

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