How do I evict without rental/lease agreement?

I co-own property with my mother and the estate of my father. My parents (while father alive) brought home a homeless man and let him stay on our property in return for help around the property and help with my father. All “deals” made were verbal. Since my father’s passing he has become less and less helpful and is now no help at all and has become a nuisance. How can my mother and I evict him? He has been here 4 years (approximately). There has never been any written contract and he has never paid monies for rent.

Asked on August 1, 2010 under Real Estate Law, Oregon


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

I would seek to have the help from a good Landlord Tenant attorney in your area.  Generally, if a person lives on your property without a formal - i.e., written - lease they are considered a month to month tenant and you have to give them at least 30 days notice to vacate the property.  The statutes on how and what regarding notice are very specific and a violation could result in dismissal of your action on procedural grounds. Verbal leases can be tricky and there is a concern here regarding the Statute of Frauds which states that certain agreements must be in writing. But I am not 100% sure that he would be considered a tenant.  He may be considered some form of employee and then you would have to "fire" him and then evict him.  Seek legal help.  Good luck. 

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 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.