My wife and I are on the lease but my brother moved in and changed his address to our unit. We want him to leave and he's refusing. He's not on the lease nor has he paid any rent. The police say there's nothing they can do.
Based on the facts as you presented...It is perplexing that the local authorities do not arrest this individual as a trespasser. That being said....he is a squatter at law with no legal rights. Advise that if he does not leave within a stated time period, you will remove his personal items from the home, place them in storage, and change all of the locks. Also, proactively advise the post office that his residence is not the premises he so claims... and that any further delivery of his mail is to your address is to cease. Present them with a copy of the deed to substantiate your ownership, and contention that there is no lease/rental agreement whatsoever. Good luck to you.
FOR LEGAL ADVICE CONTACT AN ATTORNEY OF YOUR CHOOSING AND RETAIN THEIR SERVICES. Responses to postings here are for informational purposes only and are NOT legal advice. The information provided here does not constitute legal advice and this answer is based solely upon the information included in the question posed. NO ATTORNEY CLIENT RELATIONSHIP IS ESTABLISHED BY THE PROVIDING OF THE INFORMATION IN THIS RESPONSE
In WA, property owners and landlords do not get to result to self-help to remove tenants from the premises.
Removing the tenant's belonging and changing the locks would be self-help that will expose the landlord to sanctions from the court.
Unless your brother broke in and occupied the property, he is not a trespasser and is some sort of tenant.
If he agreed to pay you rent, even he has never actually paid any rent, that would be very good for you as that would make him a residential tenant. A residential tenant can be legally removed from the premises relatively quickly (in about a month).
If he is some other sort of tenant (such as tenant at will), the court process takes much longer. You should expect several months.
"The police say there's nothing they can do." The police is not going to take the risk that your brother does have some sort of legal right to be there. Your brother appears to have been living there for some time.
You should review the specific facts with your attorney to find out your legal options.
Based on your facts, there could be a number of reasons why the police did not arrest the individual staying at your place. I would ask how long have they been staying there? Have you or him represented that he was in fact a tenant at any time? Has he paid any utilities? All of these things could contribute to him being recognized as a potential tenant even though he is not named on the lease. If none of these questions is applicable, I would go down to the police department and request help.
No reader should make any legal decision without first consulting his or her own personal attorney and conducting his or her own research and due diligence. To the maximum extent permitted by law, the Author, the publisher and their respective affiliates disclaim any and all liability in the event any information, commentary, analysis, opinions, advice and/or recommendations in the Answer prove to be inaccurate, incomplete or unreliable, or result in any other losses.
Our Rating is calculated using information the lawyer has included on their profile in addition to the information we collect from state bar associations and other organizations that license legal professionals. Attorneys who claim their profiles and provide Avvo with more information tend to have a higher rating than those who do not.What determines Avvo Rating?Experience & background
Years licensed, work experience, educationLegal community recognition
Peer endorsements, associations, awardsLegal thought leadership
Publications, speaking engagementsDiscipline