What action can I take against my sibling and her husband to vacate our deceased mother’s home?

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What action can I take against my sibling and her husband to vacate our deceased mother’s home?

I am the executrix of our deceased mother’s estate and according to her Will. I am to distribute all of her assets equally among my 2 sisters and 2 brothers. Additionally, all decisions regarding the home are left to my discretion. I want to sell the home, pay mother’s bills, and divide the remaining profit among my siblings. However I cannot sell it as long as my sister and her husband continue to occupy the home. Mother died in 01/10. To this date, 10/25, my sister and her husband refuse to move. They do not pay rent or the upkeep of the property. What recourse do I have?

Asked on October 25, 2010 under Real Estate Law, Georgia

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

If there is no lease--or if there was a lease, including an oral or verbal one, but the sister and  her husband are in violation of it (such as by not paying rent)--they can be evicted. Someone or something with legal right to possession--in this case, your mother's estate, for which you are executrix--can evict people who have no legal right to possession, such as those living in a premises without a lease or other right (such as a life estate) to be there. You have to go through the formal, court-ordered eviction process, which in this case probably begins with serving a notice to quit on them, asking them to leave; if they don't leave, you then get a judgment of possession entitling the estate to possession; if they still don't leave, you use the judgment to get a writ or warrant directing the sheriff (or similar law enforcer) to evict them. It's a fairly straightforward process and you can get forms and instructions from your court system; given that's family, though, you may wish to retain a lawyer to do this, to make it less personal.


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