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In my sons divorce papers it states that his mother may stay…

In my sons divorce...

In my sons divorce papers it states that his mother may stay on the property in her trailer for 15 years rent free. She is now trying to sell the property how binding is that contract?

Lawyer's Assistant: What state is this in? And how old is the mobile home?

Texas 6 yrs The mother owns the trailer. She bought it in 2012 and moved to Texas because she could not pay rent in Mo.

Lawyer's Assistant: Has anything been filed or reported?

My sons divorce was final 2 1/2 years ago. The xwife is trying to destroy my son and myself trying to make sure we don't have anything or anywhere to go

Lawyer's Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?

Is the contract in the divorce papers binding say I have the right to live here. I am 71 years old and this is taking a toll on me

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Answered in 3 hours by:
3/13/2018
Lucy, Esq.
Lucy, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 32,264
Experience: Attorney with experience in family law.
Verified

Hi,

I'm Lucy, and I'd be happy to answer your questions today. I'm sorry to hear about your situation.

The divorce decree is binding, and the wife is in contempt of court if she refuses or fails to follow it. Damages for contempt could include, among other things, the costs you would incur living elsewhere until the 15 years are up and the legal fees that would be incurred in forcing the order. Since you know that she's trying to sell the property now, it's possible to go to court now and file a motion for a restraining order to stop her from selling the property.

Technically, selling the land doesn't end the obligation to you. Your right to live on the property remains, as if you were any other tenant. Her obligations transfer to the new buyer. She could be facing a lawsuit from the buyers though, if she sells the property to them without mentioning that she's got someone living there rent-free. And it would be a hassle for you if the new owner decided to go to court, and you don't necessarily want to have to deal with that. Note that, if you own the trailer, she cannot sell it as part of the deal unless it is permanently affixed to the property.

As a short term measure, while things get hashed out in court, you can file a copy of the page from the divorce decree granting you the right to remain on the premises with the county land records. That way, if someone is thinking about buying the property, they will see that you have a claim to live there rent free for 15 years. Many prospective buyers will change their minds at that point. But at least if they decide to proceed, they'll be on notice of your claim, which will make it that much more difficult for them to make you leave. That's something you may want to do, regardless of what other action you decide to take.

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Another option is to send her a letter, reminding her of the obligations in the decree and letting her know quite clearly what she'll be responsible for if she violates it by taking action that results in getting her removed. Let her know that you'll sue for 12.5 years of future rent plus attorney's fees. You could then offer to settle for some amount of money you think is fair (if no amount is fair, then you'd just explain why you're not moving). If your son used a lawyer for the divorce, you might want to see if they'd be willing to write the letter for you. She's more likely to pay attention if it comes from a lawyer.

Have I answered your question? If any part of my response is unclear, please reply WITHOUT rating so I can clarify. My goal is to provide excellent service, so if I've done that, please give me a 5-star rating before signing out. Thank you for using JustAnswer.

Lucy, Esq.
Lucy, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 32,264
Experience: Attorney with experience in family law.
Verified
Lucy, Esq. and 87 other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you
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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
This is a 5* rating for sure. She added to a lot of answers I had and had several I didn't know. I am so glad I found your site.At 71 years old I really needed these answers.Thank You
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Lucy, Esq.
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DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.

The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).

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