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Old 08-19-2008, 10:00 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Need basic legal advice in San Diego.

I have a friend in San Diego who found his girlfriend was seeing someone else. They've been dating for 5 years and living together in his apartment for 3 years. She is not on the lease. She has not had a job in years but apparently just started a new job today.

He's wondering if he can kick her out and have the locks changed, or does California law give her some rights?

I was hoping some of the lawyers here might have some thoughts about this.
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Old 08-19-2008, 10:31 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I'm a Canadian responding to this but I figure with the way the laws are are in Canada surrounding common law they'll probably be pretty similar.

even if she's not on the lease he might be screwed. if she can show they have been co habitating for 3 years that'll probably be enough to establish a case for common law. if that happens he is screwed because granted he could tell her to leave and have the locks changed but at the same time she could probably sue him and take half of the possessions in the home when she leaves even some stuff that she didn't herself put any money in to or that he owned before they got together could be fair game for such a case.

like I said not a Californian nor a lawyer but I did take Canadian law and I can't think that the laws surrounding common law are much different in the US than Canada
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Old 08-19-2008, 10:35 PM   #3 (permalink)
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According to Google, there is no common law marriage in Kalifornia.
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Old 08-19-2008, 10:42 PM   #4 (permalink)
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If her name isn't on any of the papers, bills or lease, wouldn't it be his word against hers?

Karma should decide this quickly.
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Old 08-19-2008, 10:42 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Might have to check on that with a real Cali lawdog. In Florida if you receive mail somewhere that is your legal residence and need to be evicted AFAIK. However, I would just kick her out and let her go on her way. The odds of her knowing the actual law is pretty slim.
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Old 08-19-2008, 10:47 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I'd give her the boot... No need to change the locks and stuff... He should just tell her to pack her stuff, by day X, and be out of there. Nuff said.

I doubt she'll argue if she's with someone else.
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Old 08-19-2008, 11:31 PM   #7 (permalink)
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they don't happen to have a storage unit thats in her name do they?

A co-worker of mine had a similar situation, his girlfriend of 2 years had a storage unit and he happened to have a key, so basically he waited until the weekend when she worked and moved all her crap into the storage unit for her and changed the locks. (locks to the apartment not the storage)
After several unanswered "baby I'm sorry" phone calls the broad finally got the message and left him alone.
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Old 08-20-2008, 12:06 AM   #8 (permalink)
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the easiest way is to do some quick research on the eviction laws, as well as asking a local police man about this. if her name wasn't on the lease, most states do not consider anyone not on the lease as a tenet. also taking with the landlord will help. most landlords should know those laws as they have to be able to deal with the people who don't pay.
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Old 08-20-2008, 01:45 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Well, he has a bit of a prob.

No matter that she is not on the lease, she lives there. It’s her residence by law, all she has to do is show her clothing, cosmetics, personal papers etc as proof she lives there. Remember “wherever you hang your hat is your home?” well…. that’s about the truth. Neither person can be forced from their home by the police.

If he wants her out he has to go through the eviction process. And I have seen where judges wont evict because of purely relationship matters. Think of it this way, if she is paying half of everything has she done anything wrong in the lease? Yes cheating is a horrible thing to go through but from a legal matter its immaterial to the lease. The lease is a monetary, not an emotional agreement.

Also even though there is no "common law marriage” in California there are civil laws regarding common property when people are cohabitating in a boyfriend/girlfriend relationship. Basically it’s like marriage without the paperwork. Splitting the property is going to be ugly, and if either person just takes items they can be sued. On the other hand, its not theft as both own it.

It may be easier to keep her for a short while and move his things out to a storage unit. That’s what I did, she came home off a 24 hour shift to find me and my stuff gone.

Tell him good luck.


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Old 08-20-2008, 03:30 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Aww, but it is Kalifornia, with the Governator.
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