Can I be forced to vacate a house without a 30 day evacuation notice?

My aunt and my father were recently in court over who would take possession of my grandmother’s house after she passed away. My aunt won but my dad was living there. Now he is claiming that he must vacate the house within a few days, or else be taken to jail. Under state law, mustn’t he be provided with at least a 30-60 day evacuation notice before having to leave? Or does this situation not apply, since it was a battle over my grandmother’s Will and not as simple as landlord and tenant law?

Asked on August 20, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Virginia

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Typically in such a situation, your father will be viewed as either a tenant (there need not be a formal lease agreement) or at least a licensee (that is a long term occupant of the premises). In either event, under the law he must be provided a 30 day notice (in some states 60 days) notice. To try and evict him without proper notice can open up the legal owner (his sister) to civil penalties. If he does not leave by the date specified in the notice, then she will have to file an eviction lawsuit, known as an "unlawful detainer", with the court.

The above is the general rule. However, absent being able to review the specific documents of the case, this may or may not hold true. 


IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.