Something Everyone Should Know About the Law!
Especially When Dealing With Domestic Abuse!
Hello my friend,
Today my post will be a little bit different. I am going to share some information about the law that you may find as unbelievable as I do. I have not done any research on the internet, this is strictly what I have learned from experience. I will not be able to share details of how I learned these things so I will use scenarios.
Most important, I live in Kansas City, Missouri, so this could be different in other states. However, chances are they very well could be the same or similar so I would encourage you research this in your own state.
Often times I believe some laws are put into place to help to protect people in certain situations. However, in the broad scheme of things, it protects the wrong people. Let me just get right to it.
So, imagine you have a friend or a family member that is having a rough go at life and they need a place to live for awhile to get on their feet. They come to you for help and ask to stay with you for awhile. You agree to help them by letting them stay in your home.
After a couple of months, things are not going very well. The person living with you is taking advantage of you, being very disrespectful to you and your property and is not doing anything to get back on their feet. So, you tell them that they have to move out and find a new place to live. They become angry and belligerent and tell you that they are not going anywhere. They tell you that you are going to have to evict them and give them 30 days.
That is right folks! Let me lay it all out for you.
You can’t kick them out, even if they are destroying your property, abusing you, stealing from you, etc. There are only two ways you can get them out of your house.
A. You can hire an attorney and pay them to help you file an eviction notice to have them out in 30 days. If you owned rental property, you could just go the the court house, pay a small fee, and file an eviction. However, in a private home, you have to hire an attorney and spend more money.
B. If you believe it is possible for a restraining order in your situation, you can file for the restraining order. With a restraining order, they would have to leave your home.
Another important fact! If you some how lock them out of your home. They have the right to break doors down or break windows in order to get into your home and they will not be breaking the law. You can call the police and they can do nothing but watch them do it.
Was I right? You are in disbelief aren’t you? Wait, there is more!
Lets explain with another scenario!
Imagine you have a boyfriend who does not have a place to live because he doesn’t make good choices in his life. You have an apartment so you let him live with you. This is not a great choice because he has already proved that he can be very abusive and take advantage of you but you just can’t let him live on the street.
He also does not have a car, so you also let him use your car often because after all, what else is he suppose to do?
He never works, he is verbally abusive and destroys your property and destroys property that belongs in the apartment and you live in fear. One day, after a day of constant abuse, he attacks you to the point of choking you. You are finally able to call the police and he flees. When he flees, he takes your car.
Now, you already know you can’t kick him out of the apartment but you can get a restraining order. However, here is the more.
Because you have been kind enough to let him use your car a few times. He now has the right to take your car with out your permission and you can do nothing about it. That is right folks! The fact that you own the vehicle does not matter. Because you have allowed him to use your car out of the kindness of your heart, he has the right to take it anytime he wants, regardless of what you say.
Still shocked? I was too, I could not believe it myself. However, there is more! Yes, you heard me correctly.
Lets use another scenario!
Lets say you didn’t follow through with the restraining order and you let your boyfriend come back to live with you even after the assault. You spend months with him with several attacks. During this whole time he has never worked more than a couple of weeks at a time. You continue to allow him to use your car as well as live in and destroy your apartment.
You begin to suspect he is using and selling drugs and finally after another incident you have had enough. You know you are not going get him out of your apartment and even if you did, you know you may let him come back. You decide what you have to do is just leave.
So you escape one day with your child but escape with nothing. You go back with the police to get your things and your child’s things. He has barely worked and the majority of what is in “Your” apartment was purchased by you.
However, even though the apartment is yours, most of the things in the apartment are yours and you have purchased most of the things for your child, none of that matters.
When you go with the police to get your things safely, if he protests, all you are able to take are clothes for you and clothes for your child. You can’t take any diapers, wipes, toys, pictures, anything. It is all disputable according to the law and you would have to take him to court. If at the time that the police are there to keep you safe while you pack up your clothes, there are drugs setting out, drug paraphernalia, drug scales for selling drugs, nothing can be done about it. He can flaunt everything in front of them, say what ever he wants and get away with it. He can’t put his hands on you though, so you do have the protection. You may be angry with the police but they are just doing their job. They have to enforce the law!
When you leave with nothing but a few clothes and your life and your child’s life. He can destroy everything you left there and you can do nothing about it unless you go to court and that probably won’t happen.
What can happen in the end? He destroys your apartment, he doesn’t pay any rent and gets evicted. You have an eviction on your record and can’t get another apartment and the apartment is suing you for the rent and the damage to the apartment.
So, you were in your own apartment with a man that was selling drugs, doing drugs, abusing you and causing you to fear for your life and the law protected him and not you.
I know…..you are probably shaking your head in disbelief as I have done many times. Remember, I learned all of this from experience. Not all directly but through someone close to me.
So, when I talked in a previous post about the law being way behind in protecting victims of domestic violence, this is part of what I was talking about. I am doing what I can to make a difference but I pray that people will come together to make a difference in the laws that protect the perpetrators of domestic abuse and provide more protection for the victims.
I recently had someone begin attending Hope that escaped from Illinois. She is was not married to her abuser but everything was in her name, including the apartment. She learned that in Illinois if you escape from an abuser and your name is on the lease, the landlord has to let you out of the lease. This is a law that we need in every state.
I hope this has been helpful. This is important to know for anyone thinking of helping someone by letting them live in your home. Sadly, you have to be careful who you allow that privilege.
Peace and Blessings,