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Alexia Esq.
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After almost 10 years of living together my boyfriend told

Customer Question

After almost 10 years of living together my boyfriend told me on 9/25/2010 that I had to get out of "his" house. His mother owns the house, but lives in England and we have not seen her since she bought the house 7 years ago, so she has nothing to do with the day to day running of the house.

So on 9/25/2010 in the middle of a fight he threw a piece of paper at me with a hand scribbled note telling me to be out by 10/31 due to non payment of rent. But we had never an agreement for me to pay rent. That was the first time he had ever brought up rent. I have be in and out of work over the years, mostly due to my health, and ever time I lost another job he told me not to worry, we would figure it out.

He let me stay thru October because even though I am not currenlt working I was able to help him pay the property taxes. Now it has come down to he wants me out by the end of the week. I am medically unable to work, I have no place to go, have asked everyone I know, but none are able to help. I have answered ads and put out ads, but so far have no luck. I am not sure what to do. I don't want to stay where I am not wanted, but I woud rather that than have to live outside. He has always had a bit of a mean streak in him, but has never been cruel like this before. I am not in fear of my safety, only my sanity. I am just not sure where to go with a record amount of snow on the ground, and no place to go.

I know Washington is not a common law state, but do I have any recourse since we have been tohether for so long and I have paid bills and bought food for the majoritiy of the time we have been together.

In other words, what are my options at this point? Do I legally have to move out now in the middle of winter with no place to move to?
Thank you,
Bibbie
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Alexia Esq. replied 3 years ago.

Welcome!

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Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Yes, I understand
Expert:  Alexia Esq. replied 3 years ago.
Hi again, and thank you.

With regard to your post:

After almost 10 years of living together my boyfriend told me on 9/25/2010 that I had to get out of "his" house. His mother owns the house, but lives in England and we have not seen her since she bought the house 7 years ago, so she has nothing to do with the day to day running of the house. So on 9/25/2010 in the middle of a fight he threw a piece of paper at me with a hand scribbled note telling me to be out by 10/31 due to non payment of rent. I take it, you didn't abide by that and have overstayed? But we had never an agreement for me to pay rent. (It does not sound like he is seeking to charge you for back stay.) You are either a guest or a tenant, essentially. The difference from a legal standard is that a guest has no contractual rights, and the police can be called and remove one for trespassing if they refuse to leave. A tenant, on the other hand, which you likely are, as there seems to have been 'consideration' for the right to stay there (such as you paying/contributing for property taxes), can not be kicked out in a day - a tenant has a right to stay unless evicted. I'd prefer to be a tenant, with tenant rights.


That was the first time he had ever brought up rent. It appears that he is changing the terms of you staying there. You are no longer welcome. To stay prospectively, he is only making it available if you rent, and then the term is quite short. He is making it clear that he has no intention of renewing that arrangement.

I have be in and out of work over the years, mostly due to my health, and ever time I lost another job he told me not to worry, we would figure it out. Talk is cheap, as you are learning. It is unfortunate you have no binding contract and did not marry, which would give you potential rights that come with the marriage contract.

He let me stay thru October because even though I am not currenlt working I was able to help him pay the property taxes. We are now in Dec. So you didn't leave n Oct. and you didn't leave in Nov.

Now it has come down to he wants me out by the end of the week. I see that, since you failed to leave when he asked you to, despite the months+ notice he gave, and the extention. Did you start to make arrangements at least? You will not have a right to force him (or his mom, actually) to let you stay.

I am medically unable to work, Have you applied for Social Security Disability or SSI?

I have no place to go, have asked everyone I know, but none are able to help. We definitely learn who are and are not, our true friends, when we are in need. You may need to seek out local or not so local shelters. I know that stinks, but that is the last resort when we are struck a blow and have not prepared for self-sufficiency.

I have answered ads and put out ads, but so far have no luck. I am not sure what to do. I'd contact my county agencies regarding potential homeless shelters, so you'll have a roof over your head, while you apply for disability, housing, etc.

I don't want to stay where I am not wanted, You have no choice. The mother's property rights, which she will likely be willing to sign off on him being her tenant, do not give you a right to use her property without her (or his) permission.

but I woud rather that than have to live outside. Unless he let's you, he can have the sheriff remove you. It may take a few weeks if he hasn't officially filed for eviction (which is sounds like he has not) - that may give you time to start getting proactive. Call the shelters, etc.

He has always had a bit of a mean streak in him, but has never been cruel like this before. I am not in fear of my safety, only my sanity. I am just not sure where to go with a record amount of snow on the ground, and no place to go. It is terribly sad if you have no family that would take you in until you get on your feet. As a social security disability attorney, I see if often - a disability wipes a person out financially, as the can't work, and they didn't keep up with relations - no one to turn to, they go to a shelter. Unfortunately, depending on your impairments and records, your SSD case could take a couple of years, so you need to be prepared to shelter it (not a fun thing) for quite a while.

I know Washington is not a common law state, but do I have any recourse since we have been tohether for so long and I have paid bills and bought food for the majoritiy of the time we have been together. You have no recourse with regard to being able to stay there, no. If you had a contract with him, such as if you buy the food, I'll handle your part of the rent (even if an implied contract), that still won't help you, because that is not an indefinite contract, he can stop accepting your food money next month and he can stop giving you shelter. In other words, what are my options at this point? I'm so sorry to say that you MUST be proactive and I do suggest you get out before you are removed. YOu have no legal options, only common sense options - consider using the money you use for property taxes to rent a room somewhere, if you abhor the shelter option. Apply for food stamps, medicaid and SSI (or SSD, if you are insured for same)...It would have been helpful to you had you done all this on 9/26, rather than waited 2 months, but eventually the stalling on what you need to do will cause you more grief, because you won't be prepared to move on when you walk out that door or you are removed physically by a sheriff.

Do I legally have to move out now in the middle of winter with no place to move to? Yes, although, again, he needs to evict you. That can take a few weeks, but not too long. It is terribly sad when we allow the power to stay in the other person, leaving ourself lacking in self-sufficiency, because they can take their toys s and go home, leaving us with nothing. I wish it were different for you.

Good luck Bibbie, get strong and get proactive. You CAN get through this, but you have to take your head out of the sand, because the problem isn't going away and you need to be proactive.

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