Does my grandmother need a eviction notice to throw me out?

UPDATED: Aug 19, 2011

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Does my grandmother need a eviction notice to throw me out?

My grandmother and great grandmother own the house that I am currently living in; they do not live with me. This is my legal mailing address and I have lived here my whole life with my mom (who left 2 months ago to stay with her friend). My grandmother and great-grand mom are now telling me I have to leave for no reason. However I have no place to go and they sprung this on me 2 hours ago. I was wondering if I have any legal rights and do they need a legal eviction? I pay for the food and take care of the house. They are trying to move my uncle in who does not legally live here; his address is my grandmother’s.

Asked on August 19, 2011 Pennsylvania


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

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Actually, they do need to give you legal notice to move. If you have been paying rent or a from of rent (e.g. utilities) then you are considered to be a tenant; if you have not paid any form of rent then you will be considered to be a licensee (i.e. long term guest). Either way, in most jurisdictions you will need to be legally evicted in order to have remove you from the premises. Again, the first step is to serve you with notice (typical 30 days in such a situation). If you fail to move by the date specified then your familt will have to file an "unlawful detainer" action with the court (i.e. eviction lawsuit). Once the judge enters an order for you to vacate, is you still remain, your relatives can have a sheriff come and remove you, using physical force if necessary.

Note: If they try to remove your belongings, change the locks and/or shut off the utilities, you could take them to court for unlawful eviction.

Bottom line, this is a sad state of affairs for a family. Maybe if you all sit down and calmly try to discuss things, you can come up with a satisfactory solution.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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