What Are the Legal Rights Of Adults Living With Parents?

Legal Rights Of Adults Living With Parents?

Legal Rights Of Adults In the USA

As family life is rapidly changing, we observed an increase in queries about the legal rights of adult children who are living with their parents. There are limited rights for adult children in the USA. The law does not implement a progressing obligation on parents to support their adult child, except in certain conditions like disability.

What Are The Options For House Ownership While Adults And Parents Live Together?

Many generations of American families are living together. Twenty percent of the total population and 64 million Americans live in houses with two adult generations. These livings of multi-generation give many legal and financial challenges to the ownership of the home. 

Houses having many generations may have “boomerang” children. After completing college, they may return home, and middle-aged adults who have lost their jobs or senior citizens who cannot live alone. In most cases, when the daughter and son-in-law have their mother at home and the son-in-law and daughter move in with their mom, everything works well from all perspectives. Here are some points that you must know. 


If a mom owns a house, to whom will this property pass? Do sons-in-law and daughters have to move out of the house? If mom gives these houses to them, is it fair for other siblings? What if she offers the other siblings investments and savings? Then what happens if she utilizes that savings in her care? If mom pays for the son-in-law and daughter’s house, what guarantees that she will be able to live there? What happens despite her good intentions? Will she does not provide the best care? 

However, it is difficult to answer all these questions. But discussing the situations will help avoid any misunderstandings and potential risks to the property.

Different Forms Of Home Ownership

The answer to these questions may be difficult, but we discuss different ownership for the home forms that may help you. Here are the options. 

Joint Ownership

If mom, daughter, and even son in law have the house owners as the joint tenants, the house owner will go to others when the mom passes away. Suppose mom requires Medicaid to pay for nursing at home for her care. In that case, it has some benefits because it may prevent the state’s claim for reimbursement at her death, generally referred to as “estate recovery.” In other words, joint tenancy shows that one or two people may own the house. It means that if the owner dies, the other one assumes to be the complete owner of that house. 

Tenants In Common

In this, two or more have the ownership of the house, but they have no right of survivorship. Rather than, on the death of one owner, their interest passes to the person who is in his will. If the deceased person has no intention, the law will decide which heir will get the share of the property. 

Community Property

It is a special case of joint tenancy between husband and wife. Each of the spouses will own one-half of the property. Then the spouse will share their property with anyone they want.

Tenancy In Entirety

Around half of the states consider these social ownership rights for married people. Each spouse has the ownership of the half property; however, the spouse can neither sell this property nor cannot transfer it to anyone without each other’s consent. If the death occurs of any spouse, the other has the right to claim the whole property. 

Children Act

Schedule 1 of the Children Act gives the possible alternative, particularly when the parents are unmarried. There should not be any maintenance order when the child is still under 16. If they are, then an adult cannot apply. 

It allows an adult child to gain financial assistance from their parents if they are in education or any training or have any specific conditions to justify making an order. Also, this order is for a lump sum and periodic payments. This rule does not give any rights to the adults in the family home for minor children. 

Consideration Of This Rule

If you are qualified to apply, then the court will assess the following:

  • The obligations and financial needs of each of the parents.
  • The earnings of each parent.
  • If there are any mental or physical disabilities of an adult child.
  • The needs of children and if they generate income now or in the future.
  • If they take an interest in any training or education.

Moreover, it will require disclosure from both parents and the adult child. The court has no limit on the amount of award that fulfills the needs of a child.

Does An Adult Claim Interest In A Family Home?

An adult can claim a right in property. It considers a civil action in which an adult claims they have no legal ownership of the house. Still, it is fair as their assurances and action could stake a property interest. This situation can happen in many ways. 

Usually, it has that situation when there is a family-run business. A child may be given the chance of employment at a low wage on a farm. In a special case, the parents making promises may be unable to deny that interest in favor of the adult. This circumstance may also happen when the family business tends to houses like garden centers or hotels. 

Adult children may also claim if they have heavily invested in the home to ensure this house will be theirs. These cases are a very complex area of law. It is essential to focus on early advice because it is important to avoid legal disputes. 


Adult children have some rights to financial support. However, suppose an adult child invests a huge amount in a family home. In that case, it will save considerable legal costs at an early stage.