Can a sibling kick out another sibling from her home of many years?

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Can a sibling kick out another sibling from her home of many years?

Parent who was the owner of a home passed away and left the home to 3 siblings. One sibling has lived in the home for many years and now is elderly. Her brother is now trying to kick her out of the house. He is also executer of the estate. Can he do this legally? Does she have a certain amount of time to move out? Or does she have to move out at all? She has no money to buy the other 2 siblings out. How can she live in the house long enough to find another place to live if she has to move out?

Asked on August 14, 2018 under Real Estate Law, Virginia

Answers:

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

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

An executor of an estate has the right to sell, lease or otherwise dispose of the deceased's property for the benefit of the estate. Accordingly, absent a formal lease agreement that gives this sister a right to remain in the house, she will be considered to be a month-to-month tenant. This means that she can be given a 30 notice to vacate the premises. If she does not, then the executor can file for an eviction. That having been said, she cannot just be locked out or have the utilities turned off, etc. If she is, she will have a case for unlawful eviction. Also, even if the property had already transferred to the beneficiaries, the 2 owners who want to sell could file for an action in "partition" to force the sale of the house.


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