When Americans think of the word “squatters” they likely conjure images of individuals making their homes on property far from urban areas and far from any real consequences. However, modern squatters often opt to make their homes on either commercial or residential property in urban areas and suburban areas. When many modern squatters attempt to move onto another’s property, very real consequences may result from this decision.
Taking action against squatters usually requires the advice of an experienced attorney. Squatting is one of those real estate issues that can get complicated very quickly. While it seems straightforward that an individual attempting to make his or her home on your property should be evicted and held liable for any damage that he or she caused, this approach does not always prove to be so easy.
For example, some individuals may not be classified as squatters by law but may instead be treated as trespassers. Even if an individual regularly conducts business on your property and even if he or she sleeps there, if the individual’s intention is not to live on your property, he or she may not be treated as a squatter. As a result, a different legal approach must be taken when dealing with this particular situation.
If you believe that you have a squatter on either your residential or commercial property, do not hesitate to seek legal help. Although squatting can be a complex legal issue, it is possible to navigate the situation swiftly and successfully depending on the circumstances.
Source: Findlaw Law & Daily Life, “Legal How-To: Getting Squatters Evicted,” Jenny Tsay, April 29, 2014