Ex refusing to return property gifted to me by parents

This is a discussion on Ex refusing to return property gifted to me by parents within the Family Law Questions forums, part of the Legal Questions & Answers Forum category; I was gifted a $2,100.00 complete baby bedroom set from my mother and father at my baby shower in 2010 that consisted of a 4-in-1 crib-to toddler bed-to daybed-to twin ...

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  1. #1
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    Ex refusing to return property gifted to me by parents

    I was gifted a $2,100.00 complete baby bedroom set from my mother and father at my baby shower in 2010 that consisted of a 4-in-1 crib-to toddler bed-to daybed-to twin bed.. a changing table that converts into bedside end table/dresser... a large 4-drawer dresser. I brought the bedroom furniture with me when my daughter and I (4 months old at the time) moved to KY to reunite with my exbf. I was in KY for 4 months before it ended with a domestic violence situation resulting in me renting and packing a car with what could fit and driving back to my parents house to get back on my feet.

    Side note: right before moving to KY, my parents ended up getting a very nasty divorce. After leaving KY and driving back to TX, my father offered his home to me and my 8 months old in order to get settled. While in KY my ex convinced me to repo my vehicle and I had to accept a discharge from the Army due to certain circumstances involving my ex... Long story... but I had no job, no money, and no car.

    When I left KY, my ex and I had an agreement that he would ship the furniture with his household goods per the Army or pack it in a POD if that was not an option. He agreed to this because at the time because he said that I had every right to leave and he supported the decision. This all occurred 3 days before Thanksgiving of 2010. We had court ordered custody and support mediation last week after a very nasty child custody hearing and now he is refusing to return the furniture set claiming that my mother said she was now gifting it to him.

    Might I add that my mother is now estranged from me after saying that I took my fathers side because I moved into his house to help me get on my feet and how could I do that to her after everything that he did to her. So in retribution, she decided to show up at my temporary child custody hearing and testified against me claiming that I am an unfit mother and a danger to my child and that she is better off being raised by my ex... who has never taken care of her for even 24 hrs of her 19 months on this earth. I was not shocked by her actions because she had sent me a text a few months prior saying she would do everything in her power to aid in taking my daughter away from me so that I could feel her pain. So, during our mediation after our court hearing, the mediator informed me that he was refusing to return the furniture because my mother had gifted it to him.

    My question is ... both my mother and father gifted the bedroom set to me at my baby shower. I am not sure whose name was on the credit card that purchased it, but my father was the one who actually paid the bill in full after my parents had seperated. My ex told both my father and I that he was going to ship the furniture (because I could not take it with me when I left because I could only afford to rent a small car and not a U-Haul) once he had the information about if the Army would do it or if he would have to do it himself. I have been asking and asking for the past year, but he has been delaying and avoiding all my inquiries and attempts to discuss the issue resulting in me having to go to a second hand store to find some furniture pieces for my daughter to use for a short time until her furniture arrived. My ex has led me to believe that he was still going to send it like previously agreed upon until mediation last week when he made the statement about my mother gifting it to him.

    Legally, does the fact that my father paid for the furniture make it his property? Can my mother just decide to take back the furniture because she is made and re-gift it to my ex? Is there anything that can be done to make him return it or to pay my dad the amount of money he had to pay to buy a new set? My ex and I were never married and spend more than half of our relationship apart, so I don't think he is entitled to 50% of the gift since it was given to me.


  2. #2
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    I don't think it matters who actually purchased the items because they were purchased together by your parents who were married at the time.  However it was a gift to you, and even more so to your daughter so you are legally entitled to it.  In order for you to get back the monetary value of the set is for you to sue your ex, which you can likely do in small claims court to avoid the high cost of litigation.
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