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Can I evict someone from my home after they were arrested on probable cause?

Glen Saint Mary, FL |

I am in Baker County and want to know if I can evict someone from my home (I do not live in the home and there is no lease and there is no money owed by the tenant) after they were arrested on probable cause? The person bonded out of jail and the states attorney has not charged them with any crime over a month later. Also the tenant does not live in the home alone and I want to evict just the one person and not the entire family unit.

Attorney Answers 3

Posted

The lack of a written rental agreement puts you at a distinct disadvantage in this situation. If the conduct that caused him to be arrested was on the leased premises and was such that it unreasonably disturbed the tenant's neighbors or constituted a breach of the peace, then the answer is yes. If the conduct that caused him to be arrested occurred away from the leased premises, then you have a heavy lift in terms of evicting him. Also, if you try to evict him, you must assert that he is a party to your oral rental agreement. This may or may not be an issue depending on the circumstances. You should consult with an attorney about your particular concerns with this tenant in order to formulate a strategy to get rid of the unwanted tenant.

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Asker

Posted

The arrest was not on the property, the person was called to speak to the Sheriff and turned themselves in. No attorneys here will take the case. There is no oral rental agreement, the home was purchased 10 years ago and put on property in our name when my husband had died so my sons family could move in to the home. He is now separated and I was not part of her moving in last year even though I was fully aware she moved in and welcomed her. Confused as to why no attorney will take the case.

Stephen Ross Verbit

Stephen Ross Verbit

Posted

I gather from your comment that you let your son and his wife live in the house, and your son may or may not be living there now, and you want his wife gone from the house. As there is no rental agreement, you cannot evict her. The type of claim you would need to make is called "ejectment." Her having been arrested would probably not be legally relevant to an ejectment action. Before you file an ejectment action, I would recommend you giving her legal notice that you are no longer permitting her to live there and give her a reasonable amount of time to move out, after which she will be considered a trespasser. However, based on my prior experience in a similar case, the police will not force her to leave, but will advise you to seek relief in civil court.

Asker

Posted

No it's my son still living there with his current girlfriend and children

Posted

I agree with my colleague and add that just because someone is arrested it does not mean that they committed a crime. If the State Attorney's Office has not yet charged the person, they may believe the arresting officer did not have probable cause to arrest. If you try to evict someone who was arrested without probable cause, or falsely arrested, or committed a crime unrelated to your rental property, your tenant might sue you for damages. I highly recommend you consult with a local attorney to review all the facts in detail.

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Posted

Dear "Can I evict someone from my property?":

If the person you wish off the property is considered a tenant who is supposed to pay rent, then you give notices and then file an eviction.

If the person you wish off the property is considered a house guest that you allowed on the property and never asked for rent, then you might give notices and file an unlawful detainer.

If the person you wish off the property is making a claim that it is their house since they paid certain bills such as the taxes, then you might give notices and file an ejectment.

The facts will determine which lawsuit is the correct one. I recommend that you call the Florida Bar Association for a referral or use the Find A Lawyer tab above to look for another attorney. Good luck!

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