Can my parents force my husband to leave the house that they own?

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Can my parents force my husband to leave the house that they own?

Due to the fact that my husband’s business tanked and we could no longer pay rent for our previous apartment, so 5 months ago my husband and I moved into a house on property that my parents own. Since then, my husband’s income has slipped even more and I am now paying for about 90% of our shared bills. He has become nasty over my suggestion to get a job and has increased his emotional and verbal abuse to a level where I no longer feel comfortable sharing space with him. It’s not been anything physical, just very intense and deeply hurtful yelling at me and accusing me of not meaning and living up to my wedding vows. He asked if I wanted him to move out, and I said I think that would be wise for the time being so we can have some space to think things through. To make a very long story short, he buys and sells items on eBay so he has a shipping container on the property that houses his inventory. I suggested he stay with his mother 45 minutes away and that he can come back to the property on for the 1 day per week that he does shipping. I am not denying him the right to access his inventory, and thus not denying him his source of income. After thinking over this for about 10 minutes, he came storming back into the room and demanded that I be the one who leave because my job is remote. While this is true, I am absolutely not giving him unsupervised access of my parents’ home. Things got even nastier, and I told him he needs to leave immediately. He got in my face, smirked, and told me,

Asked on January 27, 2018 under Real Estate Law, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

If you and your husband are not paying rent, you are guests of the property owners--i.e. your parents--not tenants. A home owner has the right to ask *any* guest to leave at any time--guests have no right to live in the home. While you, as the spouse, cannot require him to leave the marital home (where you live as a married couple), that limitation does not apply to your parents: they can require him to leave. If he doesn't leave, they can bring a legal action, commonly called an action "for ejectment" (though your state may have a different name for it) to remove him. This action can be fairly technical and difficult for non-lawyers, and you may have to first send him an official written notice to leave: if you parents want to go down this route, they are strongly advised to retain an attorney to help. (A landlord-tenant attorney would be a good choice; most such know how to bring this type  of action, too.)


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