WA Separation - Can Property Owner Turn Off Utilities?

Australia's #1 for Law
Join 150,000 Australians every month. Ask a question, respond to a question and better understand the law today!
FREE - Join Now
15 March 2015
Separation since late November 2014 and have not received finial court orders. My wife left with our child out of our residence (my) the home is owned by the father. We paid no rent. Can he turn off water, gas etc.?



Well-Known Member
10 February 2015
Hi there,

Can you please write that again? Who is wanting to turn off the power (you?) and why? If you and your wife have separated and you are no longer living on the premises, you can close your electricity account if you want and ask her to set up her own account.

Tracy B

Well-Known Member
24 December 2014
Hi London,

Am I correct in understanding that:
  • Your wife's father is the owner of the property you are currently staying at?
  • Your wife's father turned off the utilities after your wife (his daughter) moved out?
Have you made any contributions to the house? (e.g. mortgage repayments, renovations of value)

If you paid no rent, then this is unlikely to be a tenancy situation. Unless there is a possession agreement between you and the father you can point to (written or oral) then the owner is within his power to do as he pleases to his property.

It's probably best to speak with the father and agree on some interim tenancy payment under which the utilities are turned back on. I suspect this has something to do with you getting a separation from your wife and the domestic tension between you and his daughter. Best way is to resolve the tension as it appears to be a family matter.