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How to Get Rid of Squatters in Georgia

How to Get Rid of Squatters in Georgia

Squatting, or the act of occupying a property without permission, is a growing problem in many areas of Georgia. Whether it’s a vacant home or an unused commercial property, squatters can cause significant damage and legal complications for property owners. If you find yourself dealing with squatters, it’s essential to know your rights and take the necessary steps to remove them. In this article, we will explore the process of getting rid of squatters in Georgia and provide answers to frequently asked questions regarding this issue.

Understanding Squatters’ Rights in Georgia

In Georgia, squatters’ rights are not as strong as in some other states. Squatters do not gain legal ownership of the property or enjoy any specific protections under the law. However, removing them can still be a challenging process. To successfully remove squatters, it’s crucial to follow the proper legal procedures.

Steps to Remove Squatters in Georgia

1. Contact the police: The first step in dealing with squatters is to contact the local authorities. Notify them of the situation and provide any evidence of trespassing or illegal occupation. The police can help to enforce the law and ensure the safety of all parties involved.

2. Obtain a legal eviction: To remove squatters from your property, you will need to go through the formal eviction process. This involves filing an eviction lawsuit, also known as an unlawful detainer action, in the appropriate Georgia court. It is recommended to hire an attorney to assist you with this process to ensure compliance with all legal requirements.

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3. Serve an eviction notice: Once you have obtained legal representation, your attorney will help you serve the squatters with an eviction notice. This notice should specify the reason for eviction and the date by which they must vacate the property. In Georgia, the notice period is typically 30 days, but it may vary depending on the circumstances.

4. File an eviction lawsuit: If the squatters fail to leave the property within the specified timeframe, you must file an eviction lawsuit with the court. Your attorney will guide you through this process, ensuring all necessary documentation is prepared and filed correctly.

5. Attend the eviction hearing: After filing the lawsuit, a court hearing will be scheduled. Both parties must attend this hearing to present their case. If the court rules in your favor, it will issue a writ of possession, allowing law enforcement to remove the squatters from the property.

6. Enforce the eviction: With the writ of possession, law enforcement officers can physically remove the squatters from the premises. They may also assist in changing the locks to prevent re-entry.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Can I forcefully remove squatters without going through the eviction process?

A: No, self-help eviction is illegal in Georgia. You must follow the proper legal procedures to remove squatters from your property.

Q: What if the squatters claim they have a right to be on the property?

A: If squatters assert a claim of right to the property, it’s crucial to consult with an attorney immediately. They can help assess the situation and determine the best course of action.

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Q: Can I sue squatters for damages?

A: Yes, you can file a civil lawsuit against squatters for any damages they caused to your property. Consult with an attorney to discuss the best approach for recovering damages.

Q: Can I change the locks on my property while the squatters are still inside?

A: No, changing the locks without a court order is illegal. This could lead to legal consequences for you as the property owner.

Q: How long does the eviction process typically take?

A: The eviction process in Georgia can vary depending on several factors, including court availability and the squatters’ response. On average, it can take around 1-3 months to complete the process.


Dealing with squatters can be a challenging and frustrating experience for property owners in Georgia. However, by following the proper legal procedures and seeking professional assistance, it is possible to remove squatters and regain control of your property. If you find yourself in this situation, consult with an attorney experienced in eviction law to guide you through the process and protect your rights as a property owner.

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