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VERIFY: Do squatters have rights in Virginia?

Yes, but it takes more than a decade for squatters to claim ownership rights to your property.

VIRGINIA, USA — QUESTION: 

Do squatters have rights in Virginia?

ANSWER: 

Yes, but it takes more than a decade for squatters to claim ownership rights to your property.

SOURCES: 

Dena Everman, homeowner in Marietta Georgia

Tamera Pirtchett, 'trespasser' on Everman's property

Virginia Adverse Possession Laws- 8.01-236,237

PROCESS:

Dena Everman moved out of her home and was selling her house when she says a family of four moved in without her permission. She did what everybody would do and called the cops.

The family living there says they rented the home off of Craigslist, signed documentation and got the keys from a person they thought was the owner. They said they're not moving out and it has been difficult for Cobb County Police to evict them.

Everman's frustration is growing.

"All I know is at this point, I'm the legal owner of the property and I shouldn't have to expend this energy to get someone out that I did not give permission to be in my home," Everman said.

Hundreds of people reacted to this story on our Facebook page and reached out to the Verify team. Per a viewer's request we verified whether squatters have rights in Virginia.

To claim squatter's rights in Virginia you need to live at the property continuously and not hide the fact you're living there. Additionally, a person needs to live there for at least 15 years to claim the property under this law.

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