How can I legally kick out my ex-spouse?

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How can I legally kick out my ex-spouse?

They don’t pay rent and have became a major alcoholic who is unbearable to live with.

Asked on February 21, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Illinois

Answers:

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

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Since they are your ex they will have no more rights than a tenant or licensee.  More specifically, since they are not paying rent, they are not a "tenant" under the law.  Rather, since they were allowed to live in the premises with permission but did not pay for the privilege of doing so, they will be considered to be a "licensee".  Either way, you will have to file an unlawful detainer action (i.e. eviction) to legally remove them from your home.

You now need to deliver to your ex a written notice to vacate (typically 30 days).  If they do not leave by the specified date, you can then file suit in court.  If the judge rules in your favor, your ex will then be ordered by the court to vacate the premises.  If they don't, at that point the sheriff will remove them (forcibly if necessary).

In the meantime do not undertake any "self-help" measures such as changing the locks, etc. If you do you could find yourself on the wrong side of a lawsuit.  At this point, you should contact a tenant's right organization or real estate attorney that specializes in landlord/tenant matters. They can best advise as to the correct procedures for all of this. You can also contact the local court to see if they have a pamphlet/website that gives relevant information.

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

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Since they are your ex they will have no more rights than a tenant or licensee.  More specifically, since they are not paying rent, they are not a "tenant" under the law.  Rather, since they were allowed to live in the premises with permission but did not pay for the privilege of doing so, they will be considered to be a "licensee".  Either way, you will have to file an unlawful detainer action (i.e. eviction) to legally remove them from your home.

You now need to deliver to your ex a written notice to vacate (typically 30 days).  If they do not leave by the specified date, you can then file suit in court.  If the judge rules in your favor, your ex will then be ordered by the court to vacate the premises.  If they don't, at that point the sheriff will remove them (forcibly if necessary).

In the meantime do not undertake any "self-help" measures such as changing the locks, etc. If you do you could find yourself on the wrong side of a lawsuit.  At this point, you should contact a tenant's right organization or real estate attorney that specializes in landlord/tenant matters. They can best advise as to the correct procedures for all of this. You can also contact the local court to see if they have a pamphlet/website that gives relevant information.


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