What are my rights to occupy my deceased partner’s house?

UPDATED: May 4, 2012

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What are my rights to occupy my deceased partner’s house?

I lived with my partner for 14 years in his home. He passed away recently, leaving no Will. I was not on the mortage or deed. His brother is next of kin since his mom passed as well. Don’t know if he will just let house go back to bank or try to rent it out to pay mortgage. When do I start paying rent again and to whom? I assume it will be the administrator once he is named. I didn’t have a lease and paid my partner $425 a month. There are no records as I always paid in cash. Can they ask any amount that they want for rent? If I refuse, do I only have 30 days to move out even though I’ve been there 14 years?

Asked on May 4, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Missouri


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

I am so sorry for your loss.  You need to establish yourself as a tenant in the home in order to have any rights.  It is going to be hard from what you have said here, especially to establish the amount of the rent.  And yes, they can raise the rent to market value once the administrator is appointed.  If things do not work out then you may receive 30 days notice and if you do not vacate in 30 days they will bring an action for eviction.  I might speak with ana ttorney here and see if he or she can help negotiate a deal for you to stay longer or give you more time to get on your feet.  Good luck.

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