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I think I have grounds for an unlawful detention. Florida…

Customer Question
I think I have...

I think I have grounds for an unlawful detention.

Lawyer's Assistant: What state is the property located in? And has anyone consulted a local attorney about this?

Florida and I am just now in the process of researching what to do.

Lawyer's Assistant: What are the terms of the lease? Any issues related to maintenance or upkeep?

There is no lease, it is my brother and his family

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

They live with me and have paid the utilities in the past but stopped when I asked that they move out next year. The living situation has become extremely hostile and I am getting concerned for my safety and my home/belongings

Submitted: 9 months ago.Category: Landlord-Tenant
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Answered in 2 minutes by:
8/1/2017
Lawyer: Expert James, Lawyer replied 9 months ago
Expert James
Expert James, Lawyer
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Satisfied Customers: 13,096
Experience: I hold a JD and have more than 12 years of legal experience.
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Hello! Thank you for using Just Answer. My name is***** have over 12 years of legal experience.

During this conversation, you may receive an automatic phone call offer. I do not send that offer, the system does. Feel free to accept it if you would like to talk on the phone. Otherwise, we can continue here.

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Please give me some time to consider your question.

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Lawyer: Expert James, Lawyer replied 9 months ago

What are your questions about this?

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Customer reply replied 9 months ago
1. Do I have grounds for an Unlawful Detainer?
2. On Monday I asked them to move out by Friday. What should I do if they are not gone?
3. I know that I cannot turn off utilities, but do I still have to give them access to my washer, dryer, stove, fridge, and dishwasher?
Lawyer: Expert James, Lawyer replied 9 months ago

OK, thanks. Please give me some time to do the research and prepare a response. The internet is running slowly over here. Sorry about that.

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Lawyer: Expert James, Lawyer replied 9 months ago

Thank you for your patience. Your answer is below. When you see the option to rate, please do so with a positive rating of 4 or 5 stars. Otherwise, I do not get credit for doing my job. Don't worry, you can still ask related follow-up questions even after you've given a rating. Thank you!

ANSWER: Technically, this is not really an unlawful detainer situation. This is a landlord-tenant situation, and you have to go under those rules to rid your home of the unwanted guests.

You first need to give them a written notice that they must vacate the property. If they do not vacate, then you can start an eviction case against them.

To start the eviction process, you must file a complaint for eviction with the court clerk. Submit the complaint to the clerk with a copy of the notice that you gave to the tenant. The tenant has five days to answer the complaint.

You have to serve them a summons to appear in court, which you get from the court clerk after you file the complaint and pay the required fee. It does not have to be you personally; the sheriff or a private process server can issue the summons. Once served, the tenant has five days to answer the summons.

If they answer the complaint within the 5 days, then schedule a hearing before a judge to plead your case for the eviction. If the tenant does not respond, file a Motion for Default and obtain a judgment to evict. A Writ of Possession is the form that gives you possession of the property. It must be enforced by the sheriff. You can obtain sole possession (i.e., have the Sheriff remove them) 24 hours after the sheriff posts the writ at the property.

In terms of what access you give them to the amenities inside, no, you do not have to give them access to those things you've mentioned.

I hope that answers your question. Please remember to click on a rating at the top of your screen and hit the submit button - 4 or 5 stars are appreciated.

A BONUS is also appreciated if you feel I've earned one today. And remember, you can still ask follow-up questions if you need to.

If you want to talk on the phone, I am available to do that for an additional fee.

And if you have new questions in the future, you should write FOR JAMES in the question. That way, I become your personal Professional.

Thank you!

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Lawyer: Expert James, Lawyer replied 9 months ago

Hi, I’m just checking in to see how things are going. I see you have reviewed my answer but I have not received credit for it. Do you need more help? Please respond so that I know what to do next.

Thank you!

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Expert James
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Expert James, Lawyer
Category: Landlord-Tenant
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Experience: I hold a JD and have more than 12 years of legal experience.

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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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