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I think I need to evict a now-adult teen mother from my parents' house


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My parents fostered kids years ago. Many of the kids have stayed in contact with them over the years (mostly looking for handouts). Prior to covid quarantine a 16 year pregnant child of a former foster kid moved in to avoid a chain-smoking "abusive" mother. To be fair, this girl's mother is not a nice person... but abuse might be a stretch.

She is now 18 and has stonewalled everyone who has attempted to help her move her life forward. My elderly parents buy her stuff all the time to avoid a scene. Like MacBooks. Now her boyfriend has moved in. No GED, no driver's license, she is not connected in any way to social services, although I think her mother is collecting benefits in her name. No interest in getting any of these things, although she drives a car around like a maniac.

Now that we are vaccinated I've been around more and witnessed a nice screaming tirade from the second floor of their house yesterday. I now see that my parents are not in charge at this point. She does not pay attention to her now toddler and my mom (an 80-something with RA) has no business minding a busy toddler.

I really need to get her out of my parent's house. I'm guessing it's going to require legal action (or someone dying.) Sigh. I hate this.

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I’d call CPS.  Seriously.  They’ll either put her in programs to help her get a job, get an apartment, get schooling, and get daycare for her child or they’ll put the toddler with a family who can properly care for her.

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Ugh. That's hard. I'm sorry your parents are stuck in this situation. It sounds like you need to assemble a team - lawyer, social services, possibly police.

Sending you lots of strength and wisdom to navigate this.

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Just now, Seasider too said:

Yep. You may also call your local Elder Abuse agency to report the situation. 
 

We have an organization I've been in contact with who these sort of coordinates things. Until said teen was actually 18 I've been nice because she would have been placed in foster care and my mom would have been mad at me... but now I can start pulling some triggers, I think. I just really hate that I have to be the one who does this.

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Do you have access to your parents' financials, or would they be willing to give you access so you can make sure they are not also being robbed even more than they have "given"? I would get eyes on all accounts ASAP.

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Just now, fraidycat said:

Do you have access to your parents' financials, or would they be willing to give you access so you can make sure they are not also being robbed even more than they have "given"? I would get eyes on all accounts ASAP.

Only on things we share. No way would mom give me access. (I've been parenting my parents from an alarmingly early age).

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3 minutes ago, Seasider too said:

Absolutely! May even need to change bank accounts and freeze credit cards. Might want to run a credit report to make sure she hasn’t used their SSNs to open new accounts in her name. 
 

Whose vehicle is she driving? If your parents don’t need it, they can sell the car. 

My parents always have multiple cars around. Supposedly this particular car is not in their name? I have no idea how that works since she has no driver's license.

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15 minutes ago, MamaSprout said:

We have an organization I've been in contact with who these sort of coordinates things. Until said teen was actually 18 I've been nice because she would have been placed in foster care and my mom would have been mad at me... but now I can start pulling some triggers, I think. I just really hate that I have to be the one who does this.

It’s better to do it now than it is to enable her and have chaos make up the toddler’s personality forming years. She’s the one making bad choices, not you. 

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This is elder abuse and manipulation.  It also may be further complicated by the law since she seems to be a resident in your parent's home and likely enjoys some legal protections.  Her "job" is to  provide for her living by taking advantage of your parents and it's going to take a will stronger than that to get her to move forward in life.  She is meeting her own goals right now.  You may be in for a serious intervention and some legal action.  I'm kind of shocked that the boyfriend just moved in.  That's surreal. She needs to get signed up for everything yesterday. 

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24 minutes ago, fraidycat said:

Do you have access to your parents' financials, or would they be willing to give you access so you can make sure they are not also being robbed even more than they have "given"? I would get eyes on all accounts ASAP.

Also - *anything* of value that is not out where it is regularly seen/used.  jewelry, coins, etc.  Anything that could be hawked to a pawn shop, etc.

22 minutes ago, Ethel Mertz said:

Erring on the side of caution here... Make sure your parents' pharmaceuticals are secure. And, also, once they are evicted, change the locks.

This.

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Are your parents on board?  I’m not sure it’s possible to evict someone from someone else’s house.  If you call CPS about the toddler will your mom just say it’s fine, everything is fine?  If you try to use legal action will your parents go along or side with the girl? If you get her evicted will she turn right around and knock on the door with a sob story and be let back in? You might want to discuss all of that before you spend much money.  

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4 minutes ago, Seasider too said:

Are your parents of totally sound mind? Them allowing all this - especially the bf moving in - has me curious. They are absolutely being intimidated. 
 

Anyway, their mental status is something that may factor in how this is best handled. 

Yes and no. They are legally of sound mind, I believe, and can at least fake it for the studio audience. But no, they never have truly been completely right. They've always "Forest Gumped" their way through whatever mental illness is probably there, I think. Most people would have crashed and burned by now.

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7 minutes ago, HeartString said:

Are your parents on board?  I’m not sure it’s possible to evict someone from someone else’s house.  If you call CPS about the toddler will your mom just say it’s fine, everything is fine?  If you try to use legal action will your parents go along or side with the girl? If you get her evicted will she turn right around and knock on the door with a sob story and be let back in? You might want to discuss all of that before you spend much money.  

I can have social services take my dad on as a client (he's had strokes/ seizures), and hopefully the risk to him can be perceived to be high enough to warrant intervention. My hope is that if I send a certified letter from an attorney to this teen that she'll follow the path of least resistance. Anyone who can't be bothered to collect welfare seems unlikely to fight me in court.

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You know, as sketchy as this sounds, I'm not sure that legally it's any of your business.  I hate it, and I would definitely get involved in your place, but I'm not sure the law is on your side.  If your parents are living independently and handling their affairs, how they set up their household might not be something you can legally interfere with.  If this girl has mastered the grift she may know the laws.  She's living there full time and has more influence than you right now.  She has also brought in full time back-up.  I'm on your side, but I'm not sure the law is.  

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4 minutes ago, KungFuPanda said:

You know, as sketchy as this sounds, I'm not sure that legally it's any of your business.  I hate it, and I would definitely get involved in your place, but I'm not sure the law is on your side.  If your parents are living independently and handling their affairs, how they set up their household might not be something you can legally interfere with.  If this girl has mastered the grift she may know the laws.  She's living there full time and has more influence than you right now.  She has also brought in full time back-up.  I'm on your side, but I'm not sure the law is.  

I could get Dad on board. It will probably get super ugly with Mom. I will spare you the details, but he has tried to leave.

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2 minutes ago, MamaSprout said:

I could get Dad on board. It will probably get super ugly with Mom. I will spare you the details, but he has tried to leave.

He's probably miserable.  What elderly man wants squatters with a baby in his home? That's no way to retire.

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Posted (edited)
16 minutes ago, MamaSprout said:

I could get Dad on board. It will probably get super ugly with Mom. I will spare you the details, but he has tried to leave.

I wonder if you could use that as leverage.  Get dad out of the house and have him on your side with the legal stuff.  
 

I wouldn’t expect her to just leave even with a letter from a lawyer.  The easiest path for her is to just stay put until and unless the sheriff puts her out.  

Edited by HeartString
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29 minutes ago, KungFuPanda said:

You know, as sketchy as this sounds, I'm not sure that legally it's any of your business.  I hate it, and I would definitely get involved in your place, but I'm not sure the law is on your side.  If your parents are living independently and handling their affairs, how they set up their household might not be something you can legally interfere with.  If this girl has mastered the grift she may know the laws.  She's living there full time and has more influence than you right now.  She has also brought in full time back-up.  I'm on your side, but I'm not sure the law is.  

If it can be presented (and sold) as elder abuse - she does have cause (and legal backing) as his daughter to intervene.

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The easiest path is to say, “You’re abusing my parents.  Get out or I’ll have the police get you out.”  But I don’t think that’s best for the child, which is why I would start with CPS.  They have a constitutional requirement to try to keep them together, which means they may pay for emergency housing, and any number of other things to keep baby with mom, including free licensed daycare and free job training.  Ethically it’s the best bet IMO.  Also CPS intervenes with young children much more quickly than with older ones.

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But what if CPS guilty the parents into letting her stay?  Their responsibility it to the baby, not the parents.  I would go with elder abuse, get a lawyer, and pursue it from that angle.  I'm sorry for the baby- CPS can step in once baby is in an unsafe environment,  but I would not trust them with this.

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14 minutes ago, BusyMom5 said:

But what if CPS guilty the parents into letting her stay?  Their responsibility it to the baby, not the parents.  I would go with elder abuse, get a lawyer, and pursue it from that angle.  I'm sorry for the baby- CPS can step in once baby is in an unsafe environment,  but I would not trust them with this.

I think I agree with you here.  CPS would come in, see the toddler cared for by the elders and shrug.  From their perspective the child is being taken care of, nothing to see here.  

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I am sorry.  This sounds like a complicated situation.  Are there any concerns that if you get them to leave your mom and dad will be paying for the place and other expenses?  If they have been guests in your parents' home, it is going to depend on state law whether they will be considered tennants or not and the steps that would need to be taken to force them to leave.  

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19 minutes ago, Katy said:

The easiest path is to say, “You’re abusing my parents.  Get out or I’ll have the police get you out.”  But I don’t think that’s best for the child, which is why I would start with CPS.  They have a constitutional requirement to try to keep them together, which means they may pay for emergency housing, and any number of other things to keep baby with mom, including free licensed daycare and free job training.  Ethically it’s the best bet IMO.  Also CPS intervenes with young children much more quickly than with older ones.

She qualifies for free childcare vouchers and pretty much every service you can imagine. I've actually had a family (not CPS) caseworker to the house before teen turned 18, but everyone agreed to play nice at that time and I went along with it b/c she would have been placed in foster care. 

My mom actually stopped at the closest Lutheran church/ childcare ministry that accepts these vouchers and both the toddler and grandma were happy, but teen said, "But I'm scared ... they'll abuse him" (or some such nonsense). Being scared/ having anxiety is pretty much her way of manipulating mom.

The little guy does seem behind a bit developmentally (at least compared to my 6-months younger grandson). I actually snapped my fingers behind his head yesterday to make sure his hearing was okay. It is. Nobody plays with him, really, although he's fed and at least as clean a most toddlers.

I have dealt with our state's CPS before, and there is no way they would take action. They are out of money by March most years.

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Posted (edited)
17 minutes ago, Bootsie said:

I am sorry.  This sounds like a complicated situation.  Are there any concerns that if you get them to leave your mom and dad will be paying for the place and other expenses?  If they have been guests in your parents' home, it is going to depend on state law whether they will be considered tennants or not and the steps that would need to be taken to force them to leave.  

Lol. My mom has paid the rent for many former foster kids. And utilities, court costs, and vehicles. She even had to sell a rental house she owned where one just refused to pay. There was some circumstance that made moving out attractive to them so they didn't need to go to court, thank goodness. My mother lives in a constant state of crazy, which is why I want to move this kid on by way of programs and such. Mom at least now sees that her money isn't endless now that dad has retired.

I think that is my angle. Kid needs to move out or dad goes to assisted living with all of those associated costs and I will hire an attorney on his behalf after I call social services. I think mom will be relieved to have teen out of the house, but she doesn't want to deal with it herself.

Edited by MamaSprout
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1 hour ago, Katy said:

The easiest path is to say, “You’re abusing my parents.  Get out or I’ll have the police get you out.”  But I don’t think that’s best for the child, which is why I would start with CPS.  They have a constitutional requirement to try to keep them together, which means they may pay for emergency housing, and any number of other things to keep baby with mom, including free licensed daycare and free job training.  Ethically it’s the best bet IMO.  Also CPS intervenes with young children much more quickly than with older ones.

I support this - as she is engaging in elder abuse, whether it is deliberate or not.  She is deliberately taking advantage of them because she's afraid to grow up.  She's already made that choice by having a baby when she was a teen - she has to put on her big girl panties now and use the programs that have been offered to her.   As long as she is in their home - she has zero motive to grow up.  I agree, CPS will see a home with older people taking care of things.  They won't do anything.

 

OP - elder abuse first, then the rest can fall into place.

1 hour ago, Bootsie said:

I am sorry.  This sounds like a complicated situation.  Are there any concerns that if you get them to leave your mom and dad will be paying for the place and other expenses?  If they have been guests in your parents' home, it is going to depend on state law whether they will be considered tennants or not and the steps that would need to be taken to force them to leave.  

If they can get an elder abuse designation, many of those tenant rights go away.

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I’m so sorry you are going through this.  It sounds horrible.

I think the CPS and APS route is your best bet.  Maybe talk to an attorney.  

Echoing that if you can, you need to help lock up all valuables (do your parents own weapons? Those, too), car keys, bank statements, etc.  I would run their credit, if they let you, put a freeze on it, and - definitely check to see if they have added her name on any of their credit cards!  She could have a card in her name out there somewhere.  Aaack.  
 

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4 hours ago, MamaSprout said:

I can have social services take my dad on as a client (he's had strokes/ seizures), and hopefully the risk to him can be perceived to be high enough to warrant intervention. My hope is that if I send a certified letter from an attorney to this teen that she'll follow the path of least resistance. Anyone who can't be bothered to collect welfare seems unlikely to fight me in court.

You can try that but you don't have any legal standing to proceed to court.  I am not sure I would trust an attorney who would send this letter on your behalf.  If you got your dad on board and have it sent from him that would be a better option, although enforcing it does get sticky without mom on board.

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4 hours ago, Katy said:

The easiest path is to say, “You’re abusing my parents.  Get out or I’ll have the police get you out.”  But I don’t think that’s best for the child, which is why I would start with CPS.  They have a constitutional requirement to try to keep them together, which means they may pay for emergency housing, and any number of other things to keep baby with mom, including free licensed daycare and free job training.  Ethically it’s the best bet IMO.  Also CPS intervenes with young children much more quickly than with older ones.

The OP has no standing to order someone out of a house she does not own or rent.  The police will stay far away from this unless an actual crime is alleged as it is a civil matter. At this point the mom, child and (maybe) the boyfriend are tenants and do have rights re: eviction.

Calling CPS is a valid option if the OP can state she has seen abusive/negligent behavior towards the child.  Nothing she posted indicates anything that would warrant involvement by CPS.

 

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11 minutes ago, AnotherNewName said:

The OP has no standing to order someone out of a house she does not own or rent.  The police will stay far away from this unless an actual crime is alleged as it is a civil matter. At this point the mom, child and (maybe) the boyfriend are tenants and do have rights re: eviction.

Calling CPS is a valid option if the OP can state she has seen abusive/negligent behavior towards the child.  Nothing she posted indicates anything that would warrant involvement by CPS.

 

Elder abuse- not child abuse. There would be no point in calling CPS in my state even if there were child abuse.

The legality is fuzzy for sure, but we’re not talking about a person who is working hard at anything.

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14 minutes ago, AnotherNewName said:

The OP has no standing to order someone out of a house she does not own or rent.  The police will stay far away from this unless an actual crime is alleged as it is a civil matter. At this point the mom, child and (maybe) the boyfriend are tenants and do have rights re: eviction.

Calling CPS is a valid option if the OP can state she has seen abusive/negligent behavior towards the child.  Nothing she posted indicates anything that would warrant involvement by CPS.

 

Screaming at an elderly woman she's taking advantage of and living there for free while not earning any money of her own or making any steps to be responsible for herself and her child is the crime of elder abuse in many states.  So yes, she could probably have her charged, or at least threaten her with it so she would feel compelled to leave.

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19 minutes ago, AnotherNewName said:

You can try that but you don't have any legal standing to proceed to court.  I am not sure I would trust an attorney who would send this letter on your behalf.  If you got your dad on board and have it sent from him that would be a better option, although enforcing it does get sticky without mom on board.

I doubt it goes to court. 

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6 hours ago, MamaSprout said:

...no driver's license...drives a car around like a maniac.

The OP may have a basis for calling CPS if the mother is driving illegally with the child in the vehicle.

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51 minutes ago, AnotherNewName said:

The OP has no standing to order someone out of a house she does not own or rent.  The police will stay far away from this unless an actual crime is alleged as it is a civil matter. At this point the mom, child and (maybe) the boyfriend are tenants and do have rights re: eviction.

Calling CPS is a valid option if the OP can state she has seen abusive/negligent behavior towards the child.  Nothing she posted indicates anything that would warrant involvement by CPS.

 

Whether they are legally considered tennants (who would need to be evicted) rather than simply guests that can be asked to leave and are trespassing if they don't depends on state law.  I would try to avoid raising any issues directly about money because if they are not currently paying rent but then pay a token amount it could change their status and make them more difficult to get rid of, depending on the state.  

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Mom is on board. I have to schedule phone calls with her. I’ve asked her to quietly secure valuables, prescriptions, and firearms.

I need to think about the best way to proceed. If my parents send the teen a certified letter with a date asking her to leave, I think that can serve as an eviction notice that qualifies her as a homeless family for certain social services in our state.

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Do you know if the young person is receiving any other mail at your parents' address?   I would be concerned about sending a letter to the address sending a precedent for legitimizing the arrangement and would want to get some legal input.

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A good lawyer now may save a lot of headache and $$$ in the long run.

I agree with calling elder abuse Services, but if a good lawyer can be found quickly, I’d get the lawyer’s input on that first. 

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1 hour ago, Bootsie said:

Do you know if the young person is receiving any other mail at your parents' address?   I would be concerned about sending a letter to the address sending a precedent for legitimizing the arrangement and would want to get some legal input.

Maybe an occasional doctor bill, but no ID or anything.

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If your parents are both on board, do you think she will respond to a simple verbal request to move out?  Is that a possibility without escalating the situation?  Even if it is an excuse that another family member will be visiting or something else, it would be easier if a request could simply be made, and help accessing community resources be provided if desired.  

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Get legal advice on how to proceed in your state, and any questions that need to be answered before you make a move. 

Previous posters have mentioned several potential legal pitfalls, and I'd want to know that any action was working toward and not against your goals. And that your parents are protected if this couple suddenly feels threatened at the prospect of needing to move on with their lives.

 

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18 hours ago, Katy said:

Screaming at an elderly woman she's taking advantage of and living there for free while not earning any money of her own or making any steps to be responsible for herself and her child is the crime of elder abuse in many states.  So yes, she could probably have her charged, or at least threaten her with it so she would feel compelled to leave.

One isolated incidence of screaming - no. And living there for free in and of itself is not elder abuse. Elder abuse can't be used as a catch-all for "I don't like what this person is doing so it must somehow be a crime".

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17 hours ago, Bootsie said:

Whether they are legally considered tennants (who would need to be evicted) rather than simply guests that can be asked to leave and are trespassing if they don't depends on state law.  I would try to avoid raising any issues directly about money because if they are not currently paying rent but then pay a token amount it could change their status and make them more difficult to get rid of, depending on the state.  

With the parents allowing her to actually reside there and treat it as her home she receives some level of protection in ever state, and will most likely need to be evicted.  The police will not get involved unless there is some kind of domestic disturbance.

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