How to evict a family member with no lease?

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How to evict a family member with no lease?

I would like to evict my brother. The problem is that when I try to file the papers it states for a person that has a lease agreement. He has never paid a bill and we never made a agreement. Can I still evict him? He is also out of line and I was wondering could I get a restraining order on a person that lives in my house?

Asked on March 14, 2016 under Real Estate Law, Florida

Answers:

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

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Since your brother has not paid any rent or any form of rent (such as the utilities), then he is not legally considered to be a tenant. Therefore, he will be considered to be a "licensee", who is someone who has been invited to stay on the premises by the rightful occupant. He will still need to be served a notice to vacate. Depending on specific state law, a lodger must typically recieve a 30 day notice. If he fails to vacate within the time stated in the notice, you will need to file for an "ejectment" (basically an eviction lawsuit for a guest). In the meantime, you must not take any self-help measures, such as removing your brother's belongings or changing the locks. If you do, you could find yourself in legal trouble of your own. That all having been said, if you have a genuined fear for your safety, you can go to court and get a protective order (e.g. a restraining order) which would allow you to remove him from the premises; the police can enforce it if necessary. At this point, you really should consult directly with a local attorney who can best advise you further.


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