Author Topic: How long after moving out can you ask for items back?  (Read 9701 times)

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lynnetteleigh

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How long after moving out can you ask for items back?
« on: February 01, 2013, 11:56:46 PM »
I'm in a situation now where the ex of my DH has asked for items from when their son was an infant because she is now pregnant. She moved out nearly 3 years ago.
She was not stopped from taking these items she probably just didn't see the use for them then. When asking for us to search the attic for these items she mentioned that we(my DH and I) would not need these items because my family would buy me baby stuff when I do decide to have kids.

Honestly at this point we do not even know what baby stuff is in the attic and it is hard to check because it is blocked by a stack of other things and we also have primary custody of their son and he makes any task(especially one involving a ladder into a location he hasn't seen before) more difficult.

I told my DH to just say that most of the stuff is gone because we have been trying to clear out the house to sell. Is it rude to lie like this? She didn't buy most of these items, doesn't pay child support and doesn't live nearby(hundreds of miles away) so we don't really feel obligated to give her these items. But does anyone think she has a right to these? Are we really obligated to go dig them out because they belonged to her child at some point?

I may be biased in this because she has asked in the past for clothing of his(that I had bought for him) to give to her nephews. But the way she did it left a sour taste in my mouth. She didn't ask if we were willing to give her the clothes. She asked if it could be packed up and brought to her the next time she saw her son. Then when she was told no started arguing that by the time that I had kids the clothing would be outdated.

We will be seeing her within the week and I'm fairly sure this topic will come up and I want to know what is acceptable to say in this situation.

sparksals

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Re: How long after moving out can you ask for items back?
« Reply #1 on: February 02, 2013, 12:01:48 AM »
Well, I can see why she wouldn't want you to have the things her first child had and if you and your husband do have children, do you want them to have dusty dirty clothes from the attic? 

If it is too much trouble to get the stuff, then say so.   But if you ever get up there, it woudl be nice for you to clear out the stuff that she wants.

Sophia

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Re: How long after moving out can you ask for items back?
« Reply #2 on: February 02, 2013, 12:07:45 AM »
If she wanted them, she could have gotten them before. 

Since you are selling the house, when you do dig back to those items, you could sort through the stuff and pass on to her what you and your husband don't want.  There is nothing inherently wrong with clothes that were stored in the attic. My daughter wore some of the my clothes that had spent 40 years in the attic.  Kids clothes don't have fashion.  They are quality or not. 

WillyNilly

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Re: How long after moving out can you ask for items back?
« Reply #3 on: February 02, 2013, 12:49:47 AM »
This seems to me to be the perfect time to use "that won't be possible." Sure you could go to great lengths to get her the stuff, but really its a big imposition on your life right now and really just not something you are willing or able to do... and would she do the same for you if the situation was reversed? And how dare she say what your family can and will purchase?  If your family can provide for your future kids, her family can provide for hers!  In the meantime, so sad, too bad, how 'bout that beandip?

sparksals

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Re: How long after moving out can you ask for items back?
« Reply #4 on: February 02, 2013, 01:11:13 AM »
I would think it odd that you would want the clothing that she and her husband used for their child?  Let's face it, the mother has more sentimentality than the father in most cases.   Since you are moving soon, I thikn it would be nice to sort through them at that time, but you don't have to go to any big effort until then.

Aeris

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Re: How long after moving out can you ask for items back?
« Reply #5 on: February 02, 2013, 01:27:14 AM »
I would think it odd that you would want the clothing that she and her husband used for their child?  Let's face it, the mother has more sentimentality than the father in most cases.   Since you are moving soon, I thikn it would be nice to sort through them at that time, but you don't have to go to any big effort until then.

Why is this so odd? Considering that the OP and her husband have primary custody of the child in question, it's probably less "things my husband's ex used for her child" and more "things my husband and I used for his son, who we have primary custody of".

I understand why the child's mother wants them too. I don't think either one is particularly 'odd'.

sparksals

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Re: How long after moving out can you ask for items back?
« Reply #6 on: February 02, 2013, 01:38:31 AM »
I would think it odd that you would want the clothing that she and her husband used for their child?  Let's face it, the mother has more sentimentality than the father in most cases.   Since you are moving soon, I thikn it would be nice to sort through them at that time, but you don't have to go to any big effort until then.

Why is this so odd? Considering that the OP and her husband have primary custody of the child in question, it's probably less "things my husband's ex used for her child" and more "things my husband and I used for his son, who we have primary custody of".

I understand why the child's mother wants them too. I don't think either one is particularly 'odd'.

Yes, that makes sense.  Personally, if I were in the situation and I was to have another child of my own, I wouldn't want to use the clothes from the first child.  I would want to have fun choose clothes, allowing family to buy them b/c it is fun for them etc. 

christmascarol

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Re: How long after moving out can you ask for items back?
« Reply #7 on: February 02, 2013, 01:57:51 AM »
Quote
I'm in a situation now where the ex of my DH has asked for items from when their son was an infant because she is now pregnant. She moved out nearly 3 years ago.
She was not stopped from taking these items she probably just didn't see the use for them then. When asking for us to search the attic for these items she mentioned that we(my DH and I) would not need these items because my family would buy me baby stuff when I do decide to have kids.


The OP says items, not clothing.  I'm thinking much bigger and costlier items than clothing.  I don't think the OP and her husband have any obligation to give up anything at all, just to save the ex money, when the ex didn't purchase them originally.  And that would be even if the ex was contributing to her son's welfare, which she isn't.

Quote
When asking for us to search the attic for these items she mentioned that we(my DH and I) would not need these items because my family would buy me baby stuff when I do decide to have kids.


My jaw hit the floor at this.  Unbelievable. 

Penguin_ar

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Re: How long after moving out can you ask for items back?
« Reply #8 on: February 02, 2013, 07:02:33 AM »
After 3 years, she has no claim on the items (assuming it doesn't say anything in the divorce decree).
I think it would be nice to give her a few sentimental things, but be sure to also keep some-not just for your potential future children, but for your step son who may want his kids to have them.

cicero

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Re: How long after moving out can you ask for items back?
« Reply #9 on: February 02, 2013, 07:16:35 AM »
wow.

let me see:
she wants things that:
(a) if they belong to anyone , then they belong to her and her ex /your DH jointly
(b) have been in your attic for 3 years
(c) are things that were used for the child who is now in the custody of you and your husband

i wouldn't give them to her. if she comes by, say "that won't be possible".

she has a lot of nerve - telling you that if you have a baby your family will buy you things, or asking for items that *you* bought for her child.

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bonyk

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Re: How long after moving out can you ask for items back?
« Reply #10 on: February 02, 2013, 07:17:41 AM »
A lot of baby gear has an 'expiration'  date.  For example, I think car seats should be destroyed after 3 years (maybe it's 5?).  I don't know how old the stuff is, but it might be simpler to google the expected life of the items than to retrieve them.  Then you can just say that you got rid of the expired stuff.

Hmmmmm

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Re: How long after moving out can you ask for items back?
« Reply #11 on: February 02, 2013, 09:35:41 AM »
She sounds like a real pill to deal with.

But part of me says just go ahead and give her the stuff. It sound like she moved out of the family home, so may not had a place to store the items she thought she might want later.

And you do say your planning to clean out the attic to prepare for selling at some point.

If it was me, I'd ask a friend to come over and entertain DD, or get your DH to get a friend to come over to help him pull things out of the attic. Give her anything you don't want but tell her it is the last.

Sharnita

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Re: How long after moving out can you ask for items back?
« Reply #12 on: February 02, 2013, 09:46:34 AM »
I'm confused by the "she didn't buy it". thing.  Who did?  If they were gifts then is there any way of knowing whether they were from her family/friends or his?  If the items were bought from their shared expenses back when they were married, then I would say "they" bought them.  If they kepr somlpete different accounts and only he paid for baby items that would strike me as unusual. Did they divorce before the baby was even born?

As far as wanting to use timens from the previos baby - heck, yeah.  Not everything of course but a lot of things.  Some things do expire or need to be replaced but there are also plenty of things that wear well.  It can also be bonding for older sibs to know that the younger one has a shared experience/toy/whatever.

It sounds like it would be a lot of work to haul the stuff out but once it was gone it would create more storage room.  Is there any way you could tell her she or the father to be have to come pull it out?

CrochetFanatic

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Re: How long after moving out can you ask for items back?
« Reply #13 on: February 02, 2013, 10:24:00 AM »
Just say you can't find it.  You said you have an idea where it is, but you don't know exactly, and there's a bunch of stuff in the way.  You don't have to explain, just say you don't know where it is.  Not quite a lie, and can't be argued with.

I made the mistake of saying, "Yeah, I think I know where it is" when my uncle wanted me to give back a toy he had given to me when I was really little.  He wasn't asking for the return of a borrowed item, he was asking me to part with something that had been mine for most of my life.  It turned into a huge deal on FB private messages when I told him that this wasn't going to happen, and he changed his approach.  What had been a gift suddenly changed from being "given" to "lent".  His argument was that it had been his toy when he grew up, and he wanted his kids to enjoy it as he had.  Well...it was also my toy when I was growing up, and it has sentimental value to me.  I'd had no objections to the girls playing with it, but I'm afraid to even compromise and bring it up for his toddlers to play with at this point.  I wouldn't put it past him to take it, saying, "I'm not stealing anything!  It's mine!"  The subject wasn't raised again after I didn't respond to his last message, though.

I don't mean to hijack the thread, so getting back on track.  If she wanted to save the clothes for later, she should have held on to some of them in my opinion.  If you don't know where the clothes are, and are too busy to look, there isn't much she can do.

TootsNYC

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Re: How long after moving out can you ask for items back?
« Reply #14 on: February 02, 2013, 11:31:36 AM »
hundreds of miles away?

Personally, I'd ask her what her plan is for their actual physical transfer. And when she needs them.

I'd be willing to dig them out of the attic--there's a way, even if it is difficult, and I'm not a fan of saying, "oh, it's too hard." So the little kid likes to get into things, etc.? Let him come along--it'll be an education for him. Or go dig them out when he's away for some reason--find one. You only need 1/2 hour, probably.

But I wouldn't be willing to do that AND mail or ship them, or store them somewhere really inconvenient, or take them along to wherever we were meeting her.
 
And I wouldn't be willing to dig them out under a short time frame.

But no, Etiquette doesn't care if you lie--so it wouldn't be "rude." It might be something that Character or Morality would care about, but you get to decide those things in this instance, I think.
« Last Edit: February 02, 2013, 11:33:43 AM by TootsNYC »