Woman threatening to make in-laws homeless for not babysitting praised (2024)

A wife and primary breadwinner in her household has asked Reddit if she is the a****** for "threatening" to make her "in-laws homeless if they cannot understand what working from home means."

In the post, the 38-year-old, posting under username Decent-Reputation231, explained that her husband, 42, is semi-retired due to an injury at work, and that recently, his sister, her husband and their two teenagers lost their home.

"We have a rental suite in our basem*nt that we just use as a family area so we agreed to let them live there," she wrote. "Because I'm paranoid I had them sign a lease," adding that she "set up the lease because of horror stories I have heard about people claiming to be tenants."

She explained that her husband, who is usually at home during the day, recently got the opportunity to do some consulting work, and she was working from home alone, and asked her sister-in-law to watch their youngest child for the day.

Woman threatening to make in-laws homeless for not babysitting praised (1)

"She then delegated the task to her 13-year-old son. Then she had her nap," she said, explaining that the 13-year-old then came and disturbed her when the baby needed changing. "I waited for my husband to get home and we discussed his family. We decided together that they needed to start paying the amount on the lease, leave, or start helping around the house," she said.

One user commented: "How come they both don't have a job at the same time? Especially with kids? Napping instead of looking for a job? Where is the unemployed husband collecting unemployment? Lots of red flags that point to LAZY mooches."

The in-laws reacted by saying the poster was an a****** "for tricking them into signing a lease agreement and then not collecting it so I could evict them...I said that I was basically the one supporting her and if she couldn't help then she had to give me money or leave."

It's important to take precautions when allowing anyone to stay in your home to avoid potential legal issues. According to an article entitled "Guest, Freeloaders, or Tenant" posted on HG.org Legal Resources, "before agreeing to let someone stay with you for any length of time, make sure you understand the laws in your state so that you do not inadvertently allow your guest to become a tenant. It may be harder to get rid of your unwanted house guest if you have not taken these precautions, and will likely require legal assistance."

Newsweek spoke to trial lawyer Mike Schmidt, from Schmidt and Clark, LLP, about the difference between a lodger and a tenant. He clarified: "Firstly, a lodger is someone who rents a room within a property where the owner also lives. In contrast, a tenant rents an entire property from the owner, without the owner living there. The key difference between a lodger and a tenant is the degree of control the owner has over the property. A lodger is generally given less control over the property than a tenant and is more likely to be subject to house rules and restrictions.

"Secondly, a lease can provide significant protection for a property owner. A lease is a legally binding contract that sets out the terms of the rental agreement between the property owner and the tenant. A lease can cover a range of issues, including the amount of rent to be paid, the length of the tenancy, and the obligations and responsibilities of both parties. By having a lease in place, a property owner can have a greater level of control over the tenancy and can protect themselves from potential legal issues that may arise from a tenant or lodger.

"Finally, the tactic of not collecting rent to then evict lodgers is not a lawful approach to terminating a lodger's occupancy. This is because the lodger is still entitled to occupy the property as long as they have been granted permission to do so. Deliberately not collecting rent may be considered a breach of the lodger's legal rights, and could lead to a claim of illegal eviction or harassment. As a trial lawyer, I strongly advise against this tactic, as it could result in significant legal consequences for the property owner."

Users on Reddit decided the woman was not the a******, with one reader commenting: "Why was SIL not job hunting rather than napping?"

Another user said: "You aren't 'threatening,' you are having healthy rules and boundaries. You are giving them an entirely reasonable choice: pay rent, contribute another ways, or have a different living situation. There's nothing wrong with that. And good for you for setting up that lease. That was an extremely smart move."

However, other users were not on the woman's side, with one writing: "Yeah but she tricked them. She didn't collect their lease payment just so she'd have cause to evict them. How deceitful."

Newsweek has reached out to Decent-Reputation231 via Reddit for comment.

If you have a family dilemma, let us know via life@newsweek.com. We can ask experts for advice, and your story could be featured on Newsweek.

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Woman threatening to make in-laws homeless for not babysitting praised (2024)
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