What can I do about a notice of ejectment that states that I’m trespassing?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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What can I do about a notice of ejectment that states that I’m trespassing?

I did a lot of major jobs for a guy. In exchange for my services as a form of payment, he gave me a trailer on a lot that is in his front yard. However, the trailer needed to be condemned so I had to agree to be responsible for all repairs. For this I also had to agree to consider myself paid in full for the work I did. I have been in the trailer for 2 years now but the guy has now passed away and his brother came to town and told magistrate that I was trespassing on his property because he had bought it from his brother. I have been given a court date but the paper said that I had 5 days to vacate property. I have the paper that the dead guy gave me and the witnesses to our transaction. Please help me as I have nowhere else to go.

Asked on April 13, 2019 under Real Estate Law, South Carolina


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

Unfortunately, what the "dead guy" gave you or his agreement that letting you live in and have the trailer was payment for your work is not binding on his brother. That was an agreement between the "dead guy" personally and you; it does not bind anyone who later acquires the property, including by inheriting it. The agreement between you and the "dead guy" simply is not enforceable against his brother--the brother does not have to honor it. As such, he can require you to leave land which he owns, and bring a legal action to remove you if you will not leave.

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