Pooler, GA asked in Real Estate Law for Georgia

Q: My grandmother gave me 2 acres of her land to place my mobile home on. Have lived on the land for 5 years,

I have paid property taxes for 3 years. Now my aunts have given me 45 days to move so they can sell the land Do I have any legal recourse?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Rachel Lea Hunter
Rachel Lea Hunter
  • Cary, NC
  • Licensed in Georgia

A: You say your grandmother "gave :you 2 acres of land. Did she transfer ownership or merely allow you to put your mobile home on the land?

Paying taxes on land you do not actually own is meaningless. You acquire no rights in the land.

If the land was subdivided and 2 acres were conveyed to you, then you actually own the land and no one can tell you to move.

So who is the record owner of the land? If you are not the owner then who still owns the land? Your grandmother? Is she alive or dead? If grandmother owns the land and is alive, by what authority are your aunts telling you that you must move? Do they have a valid power of attorney for your grandmother? If your grandmother is deceased, then is your aunt telling you to move the personal representative of the estate? And, if your grandmother is deceased, did she have a will? If so, what did the will say as to who gets the land? If there was no will, how many children did your grandmother have? Would it be possible to partition out your 2 acres from the rest of the land if this would be encompassed as part of your parent's share?

These are all issues you need to think about. Bottom line, if the land is not in your name and your grandmother is deceased, then unless grandmother made a will specifically leaving these 2 acres to you, you have to go. However, 45 days' notice is not enough. If you are a tenant-at-will (basically your grandmother allowed you to be there) then you must be given 60 days' notice after which time the aunt could commence dispossessory proceedings against you to recover the land. Same if grandmother is alive and the land is still owned by grandmother and your grandmother has power of attorney. The only alternative would be for you to either buy this portion of the land (if it can be subdivided) or the whole parcel.

if you are considering buying the land or a piece of it, then you should consult a real estate attorney who practices in the county where the land is located. You should also get a copy of the deed to the land to find out who actually owns the land. If your grandmother is alive and your aunt has a power of attorney, it should be recorded. If your grandmother is dead then there should be an estate file. You will need these documents.

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