CanI go to court for making my ex-girlfriend and my child move out of my house, when my name is on the lease and hers is not?

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CanI go to court for making my ex-girlfriend and my child move out of my house, when my name is on the lease and hers is not?

My girlfriend and I were going to have a baby, so I asked her to move in with me. 5 months later we had our son but we have grown so I asked her if she would move out (it was October when I asked her). I said that she had until the end of January to find a place to go. I thought that was enough time to find a good place to live. I have people that are going to be moving in here in February. I told her that I will want to see my son and she was okay with this whole situation until her family came to town. They talked her into making me let her stay. Now keep in mind that this house that we live in now is mine – my name is on the lease and I was letting her live there for rent. Since her parents have talked to her, she says that she’s not moving out and that she has been paying to live here for 5 months now and that she will take me to court and it will side with the mother. But doesn’t the legal tenant have the right to kick someone out? 

Asked on November 10, 2010 under Real Estate Law, Texas

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

IF there was no child--specifically, not  your child--then you would have the right to evict your girlfriend. You would have to do it properly, through the courts, if she didn't move out voluntarily when you asked her to do so, but it's still something you could do. (Note: if she's paying rent, then she's a tenant, not a guest; while you still can evict her, you would need to do so as evicting a tenant, which means at the end of the lease term, if there's a written lease, or after proper 30-day notice if an oral lease.)

However, your child greatly complicates matters, since parents have obligations for the care of their children--a parent cannnot simply put a child out on the street. You need to stop thinking of this as primarily a landlord-tenant matter and think of it as a family court matter; you should consult with a family law attorney to see what obligations--including child support--you are potentially responsible for, as well as your rights, if any, to evict the mother of your child while she has custody of the child.


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