BBG News

Daniel Phillips Featured on Fox News

Mar 15, 2024

Daniel Phillips, a real estate litigation Partner, was on Fox News to offer insights into the growing issue of squatting in American housing, attributing it primarily to unlawful possession of premises through abandonment or fraud. Mr. Phillips delineates two main squatting scenarios: individuals exploiting foreclosed properties and those fraudulently entering lease agreements with false identities. He highlights the professional nature of some squatters who protract legal proceedings to remain on properties and the challenges landlords face in rectifying fraudulent leases.

Mr. Phillips points out the significant costs and time involved in evicting squatters, which can vary by state but often involves extensive legal processes. He identifies an uptick in squatting due to increased foreclosures, leading to more abandoned properties, and ties it to broader economic issues and housing shortages. Mr. Phillips calls for legislative action to streamline the eviction process and curb the squatting trend, which he links to a rise in criminal activities in squatted properties.

Emphasizing the importance of vigilance, Mr. Phillips recommends property owners use electronic surveillance or regular checks to prevent squatting. He also suggests thorough background checks on potential tenants to avoid fraud. In cases of squatting, Mr. Phillips advises involving the police as a first step, although he acknowledges that law enforcement often views squatting as a civil matter. He warns against “self-help” eviction methods due to their high risk and stresses the importance of legal eviction proceedings to ensure property security and prevent further damage.

Mr. Phillips expresses concern that without significant changes, the problem of squatting will likely worsen, posing severe challenges for property owners, including legal complications, property damage, and associated criminal activities.

For the complete link, visit:  What is squatting? Attorney battling the phenomenon plaguing American housing explains how to fight back

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