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Ask Barrister Your Own Question
Barrister, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 36178
Experience:  16 yrs practice, Civil, Criminal, Domestic, Realtor, Landlord 26 yrs
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My significant other of 5.5 years has without any warning thru

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My significant other of 5.5 years has without any warning thru her son asked me to vacate my studio and office which is located a short distance from "our" home. At her instigation (not my request)this was provided to me 2 years ago. I do not pay rent and there is no existing signed formal agreement.

She repeatedly told me that if anything should happen to her or our relationship my occupancy of this building would never be in question NO matter what. She has now given me 10 days to vacate. I am about to be 71 years old and take 7 medications several of which are related to controlling blood pressure and hearty related conditions.

Can she do this and is there any tenant law in Wisconsin to protect me from unreasonable requests such as this and is there anything about detrimental reliance here?
Hello and welcome! My name is XXXXX XXXXX I will try my level best to help with your situation or get you to someone who can.
I hate to say it, but if there is no contractual agreement for a fixed duration, then you would be legally considered an at will tenant under a month to month tenancy with your significant other being your landlord if she owns the property. This is the case even if you don't pay any rent for the use of the property. Detrimental reliance doesn't come into play in a landlord tenant relationship, it is purely contractual.
With that said, a 10 day notice would not be legally valid to terminate the tenancy. Under WI law, a landlord has to give a tenant at least a 28 day written notice terminating their tenancy.
So if she has only given you verbal notice, or a written 10 day notice, neither are legally effective to terminate your tenancy.
The clock will only start running once she delivers a 28 day written notice to vacate. This is covered under Wisconsin Statutes 704.19 which state:
704.19 Notice necessary to terminate periodic tenancies and tenancies at will.
(3)Length of notice. At least 28 days' notice must be given except in the following cases: If rent is payable on a basis less than monthly, notice at least equal to the rent-paying period is sufficient; all agricultural tenancies from year-to-year require at least 90 days' notice.
(4)Contents of notice. Notice must be in writing, formal or informal, and substantially inform the other party to the landlord-tenant relation of the intent to terminate the tenancy and the date of termination. A notice is not invalid because of errors in the notice which do not mislead, including omission of the name of one of several landlords or tenants.
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