What are my legal rights concerning the eviction of a caretaker and his belonging from my property?

Question Details:What are my legal rights concerning the eviction of a caretaker and his belonging from my property? I have let a family live rent free on my land in NM for the last few years. I am now selling the property and have a buyer, however the people living (essentially squatting) on on the land refuse to leave, clean up the mess they have created (junked cars, non-functional, trailers, piles and piles of trash, etc), or allow me to bring a crew to clean it up (telling me they will physically block this process and will sue me if I remove anything from the land). I am at loss on what to do.

Asked 5 years ago under Landlord / Tenant | 3966 Views | More Legal Topics

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M.D., Member, California and New York Bar | FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney Answered 5 years ago

He may be considered a "tenant" because he performed services for you in exchange for a place to stay.  If not then he will be considered to be a "licensee"; that is someone who entered and remained on the premises with permission. 

In either case, now that such permission has been revoked the lawful way to remove him from the premises is to serve him with a notice to vacate the premises.  If he fails to leave at the end of that time you will have to go through the requisite procedures for eviction in your state.  At this stage the police will be most probably refuse to get involved.  Once the court enters an order for the tenant to vacate the property it will be enforced by the sheriff, using physical force if necessary.

What you need to do now is to speak with an attorney in your area.  They will advise you on the correct procedures for all of this.  If you fail to comply with these procedures you could find yourself on the receiving end of a lawsuit for unlawful eviction.

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