squatters rights in Louisiana for real estate

My sister moved into my mother’s home before she passed away 8/5/17. There is a
will being drawn up for succession of the property to divide it for 5 children
but my sister is claiming squatter’s rights. What can we do to sell the home?

Asked on September 5, 2017 under Real Estate Law, Louisiana

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

There are NO squater's rights in Louisiana. There is *adverse* possession which can very RARELY give someone ownership of property, but it requires at least a decade (10 years) of occupancy so that is not a factor here. Your sister has no right to stay. The executor of the will can hire a lawyer to bring a legal action (commonly called an action for "ejectment" at common law and in many states, but it may have a different name in your state) to remove her: "ejectment" is for non-tenants who are there without permission, like your sister. (Even if she may inherit, until the estate is settled and distributed, she has no right to be there, and the executor can remove her.) This action does not have to be expensive: in my state (NJ), you can commonly get it done for between $750 and $1,500 (which would be an estate expense: e.g. paid out of any estate bank account or money left by your mother), and I can't imagine LA is more more expensive in this regard than NJ. A landlord-tenant attorney should know how to do this: the executor can call some and get price quotes, then decide what to do.


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