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Live Scot Free In France

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Ever thought you deserved a little break? How about living for free in France? Since the Dalo Law was voted in 2007 squatters have very strong rights. A property only needs to be unoccupied for 48 hours for you squat it legally. At the quickest it can take 6 to 8 months to remove squatters by judicial means and several thousand euros of expenses as the "cause celebre" of an 83 year old Breton lady is currently highlighting in France. The situation is particularly complicated if the property is your holiday home as the courts consider that you have somewhere to live already.

In the case of Maryvonne Thamin she had gone to live with her boyfriend, when he died she had to move back into her own home as the relatives wanted to sell the boyfriend's house under French inheritance laws. Only her house was now occupied by squatters. The police you see in this picture are not there to kick the squatters out but to stop Mme Thamin taking possession of her home.

Certain unscrupulous fake agents are changing the locks on unoccupied properties and renting them out. Tenants have contracts, just not legal ones, a headache for the courts to sort out. Just proving you are the property owner and habitual resident in the house can be a nightmare in itself. Something to think about when you invest in that little French pied a terre but maybe an opportunity for those who need a break in the sun.

Heavily armed French riot police guard squatters against an 83 year old grand mother

Edited by davidg

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