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Joseph, Lawyer
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Experience:  Attorney with significant and substantial experience in multiple areas of law.
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I am considering having my 32-year-old son evicted from my

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I am considering having my 32-year-old son evicted from my home.

He has lived with his mother and me for several years and has never paid rent or contributed much of anythign toward the maintenance of the home. My main reason for wanting him out is his abusive conduct. Just recently, I have had to call the police on him when he became violent. He was taken to jail the first time and sentenced to 60 days, 55 of which were suspended pending his completion of several court-ordered mandates, and he is on probation for 6 months. the second time, as an alternative to going back to jail, he was committed to a mental institution for evaluation and stabilization. Preliminary diagnosis is bi-polar disorder.

Still, the abusive behavior continues, and in addition, my son is now doing what amounts to stealing. He is not taking the property of others off premises, but he takes possession of them and refuses to surrender them when asked. I just want him gone.

I have checked with the local authorities on the legal eviction procedure. They say that I can file the papers and they will serve my son with an eviction notice which gives him 7 days to either move out or appeal the eviction. If he does neither, he will be given a 7-day notice to quit. If he still doesn't move, the sheriff will come out to our residence on the last day and tell him he has to leave or go to jail.

Now, my question - The agent at the sheriff's department is telling me that I will probably need an attorney for this procedure. If I understand the procedure and take the measures prescribed by law for the eviction, why would I need an attorney to represent me ? While I can believe that my son might appeal the eviction just as a stall, I have three witnesses - my wife, my other son and myself, all of which will attest to my younger son's abominal and sometimes criminal behavior. Why would an attorney be necessary ?


Hello and welcome to JustAnswer

I'm sorry to hear about your situation and hope I can help.

My goal is to provide you with excellent service today.

An attorney isn't necessary since you do have all those facts on your side and plenty of landlords represent themselves in court. Even if your son attempts to bring an unlawful detainer action against you and your wife contesting the eviction, you can defend against the unlawful detainer action without an attorney.

However, the police did misinform you. Unless you have a set rent that you are charging your son that he is not paying, you need to give him 14 days of notice, since 7 days of notice is only for nonpayment of rent. However, if they will act on 7 days of notice then that would be fine, as it seems that the sooner is better in your situation.

Your son may bring an unlawful detainer action to contest the eviction, as I mentioned above. But it is not necessary to hire an attorney at that point. One reason the sheriff may be informing you of this, is that they do not want to be construed as giving you legal advice of any kind, and want to ensure that you speak to an attorney about any legal issues that you have.

Finally, another route to getting him out of the house immediately would be to get a restraining order against your son in family court. Due to his violent behavior, it should not be difficult to obtain one, and as an automatic result he would need to leave the house or be taken to jail for violating the restraining order.

For more information on unlawful detainer actions see here:

You can create an Alabama eviction notice here:

I hope the above information is helpful.

Please let me know if you have any follow up or clarifying questions as I want to ensure that you are completely satisfied with my service.

If not, please remember to rate my answer positively so I get paid for my work.

Thanks and best of luck!
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Joseph, thank you for that advice. Now I can tell the sheriff's department I have consulted an attorney, whether it is actually necessary or not. Yes, I agree, the sheriff is probably advising me in this manner to make it clear that they are only telling me what they are empowered to do and not advising me on any course of action.

I have also checked into the matter of the restraining order. The police advise me that they cannot issue such an order that would keep anyone out of their primary place of residence. If my son becomes abusive, my only remedy is to call the police. If that happens, with my son still being on probation, it is likely that he would be ordered to serve the remainder of his sentence handed to him for his first arrest for domestic violence and may have another sentence imposed on him as well. He knows all of this. Unfortunately, because of his mental illness, he sometimes cannot restrain himself.

Hello Al,

My sympathies to you in this difficult situation. I'm sure it's tough to have to kick your own son out of your house, but if he's being violent toward you and his mother, you really don't have much of a choice.

Happy to help and best of luck!
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