Infamous Texas Squatter Finally Gets Evicted

February 8, 2012

After eight months of squatting in a $340,000 home, Kenneth Robinson was finally forced to leave after a court ruled he did not have claim to the property.

Robinson had lived at the Flower Mound, Texas, home since June 2010, although he neither rents or owns it. He has written an eBook and has a Web site, http://16dollarhouse.com, devoted to how he’s successfully squatted in the home while only paying $16 to do so.

Robinson claimed he had a right to live at the home by claiming a common law stemming from the 1800s on “adverse possession.” A judge, however, ruled on Monday that Robinson does not have a right to the home and that Bank of America, which currently is possession of the foreclosed property, has the right to evict Robinson. 

Robinson moved out of the house shortly after the court’s ruling. 

The abandoned home had been in foreclosure for a year before Robinson had moved in. The mortgage company reportedly also went out of business. Robinson says to claim ownership of the home all he did was submit a $16 filing fee at the courthouse and claimed the law of “adverse possession.” 

Adverse possession requires the posting of a public notice that someone is at the property, which Robinson's $16 court filing qualified as. Also under that law, someone remains at the property for a specified time period, generally 10 years, explained attorney Lucas A. Ferrara, a partner in Newman Ferrara in New York. After that specified time period, the person has the right to claim clear title of the property. 

Authorities have been concerned about imitators popping up, who would also cite adverse possession to claim ownership of the many foreclosed, abandoned homes across the nation. 

Source: “Texas Squatter With $16 McMansion Kicked Out After 8 Months,” ABC News (Feb. 6, 2012)

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