My ex-wife is refusing to hand over my properties

Dear Gaone. Please keep my identity anonymous. My divorce was finalised about 10 months back. In the settlement agreement, which was made an order of the court, my now ex-wife was to hand over two cars and furniture to me that had formed part of our joint estate. At the time of divorce, we had been living separately, about 100 km from each other to be precise. Therefore, the aforesaid properties were under her custody. To my utter dismay, she has repeatedly refused to hand over my properties without any justifiable reason. My efforts to collect the said goods or have them delivered to my premises have hit a snag several times. Kindly advise.

Dear Anonymous

My advice will generally stem from the legal perspective. It would be judicious for you to consult an attorney for specific legal advice. One of the legal remedies available to you is an application for contempt of court. The application purports that an order for contempt of court be granted against the respondent (in this case your wife). This application is made to the same court that effected the settlement agreement between you and your ex-wife into an order of the court and granted a decree absolute. A contempt of court order in this instance strives to compel the respondent to comply with the court order and grant imprisonment or suspended imprisonment. Common law providence has ordained the hereinafter elements to be present, so as for an order for contempt of court to be granted; these elements are to proven beyond reasonable doubt.

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