How to evict a family member who has no lease?

My son, his wife and their 2 children live at my residence. There is no written agreement or money exchanged. Now he refuses to leave. What grounds do I have to make him vacate?

Asked on February 24, 2019 under Real Estate Law, Arkansas

Answers:

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

Answered 1 year ago | Contributor

Since your son is not paying rent, he and his family are "guests" not a tenants. And a guest may only remain so long as the property owner allows them to; permission may be withdrawn at any time and for any reason. If the permission is withdrawn and the guest does not leave, then they become a trespasser and the police can help remove them. So there is no need for an eviction action.However, sometimes the police refuse to do intervene is such cases, feeling that if someone has been living there for some time or claims some right to live there, then the court should determine whether they can be made to leave. If the guest claims a right to stay and the police will not remove them, then the property owner would need to bring an "ejectment" action (which is basically an eviction for non-tenants). Further, if the "guest" has lived on the propety for a long enough time, then their status may be elevated to that of "licensee" which is similar to a tenant and therefore an eviction proceeding must be initiated. Finally, it should be noted that if the "guest" is supposed to pay rent (which can include paying certain household bills like electric, cable, groceries, heating oil, etc.) then even if they have not paid these amounts, they are a tenant, in case, they would need to be evicted for nonpayment of rent (if they haven't paid). Alternately, if they are a tenant but there is no written lease, then they are a "month-to-month" tenant so they may be given 30 days notice to vacate (and then evict them if they do not go). At this point, you should consult directly with an attorney who handles landlord/tenant matters as they can best advise you further.

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

Answered 1 year ago | Contributor

Since your son is not paying rent, he and his family are "guests" not a tenants. And a guest may only remain so long as the property owner allows them to; permission may be withdrawn at any time and for any reason. If the permission is withdrawn and the guest does not leave, then they become a trespasser and the police can help remove them. So there is no need for an eviction action.However, sometimes the police refuse to do intervene is such cases, feeling that if someone has been living there for some time or claims some right to live there, then the court should determine whether they can be made to leave. If the guest claims a right to stay and the police will not remove them, then the property owner would need to bring an "ejectment" action (which is basically an eviction for non-tenants). Further, if the "guest" has lived on the propety for a long enough time, then their status may be elevated to that of "licensee" which is similar to a tenant and therefore an eviction proceeding must be initiated. Finally, it should be noted that if the "guest" is supposed to pay rent (which can include paying certain household bills like electric, cable, groceries, heating oil, etc.) then even if they have not paid these amounts, they are a tenant, in case, they would need to be evicted for nonpayment of rent (if they haven't paid). Alternately, if they are a tenant but there is no written lease, then they are a "month-to-month" tenant so they may be given 30 days notice to vacate (and then evict them if they do not go). At this point, you should consult directly with an attorney who handles landlord/tenant matters as they can best advise you further.


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