Eviction Nightmare: Woman Fights to Strengthen Illinois Anti-Squatting Laws


The Emotional and Financial Toll: A Chicagoan’s Fight Against Squatters

A Shattered Inheritance

Darthula Young’s world was shattered when she inherited her mother’s property in Chicago, only to find it occupied by a “professional squatter.” A phone call from a neighbor reporting a shooting outside the property set Young on a harrowing journey.

A Lengthy Legal Battle

Upon arriving, Young discovered bullet holes in the window and locks that had been changed. Evicting the squatter proved to be a daunting task, involving countless court appearances and lengthy delays. “I went to court probably six or seven times,” she recounts.

Young endured emotional torment as the squatters occupied her mother’s home. “To see that somebody has totally taken over all of her personal properties, and her things are there, I didn’t think it would make me emotional, but it made me very emotional.”

The Financial Burden

Beyond the emotional distress, Young faced a hefty financial burden. The squatters racked up a ,500 water bill and stole utilities, leaving Young with a large expense. She also incurred damages to the property, amounting to approximately ,000.

Recourse for Homeowners

The lack of recourse for homeowners like Young highlights the need for legislative action. “There is no recourse to the squatter,” Young laments. “I’m sure I can’t collect on my own personal damages or collect anything.”

A Call for Legislation

Inspired by her ordeal, Young is seeking legislative action to protect homeowners in Illinois. She has reached out to state representatives to introduce legislation similar to a recent Florida bill that increases penalties for squatters and provides assistance to homeowners.

Emotional and Financial Impact

The impact of squatter incidents extends beyond financial losses. “It’s emotionally draining,” Young says. “The people that I have talked to who are going through this situation are saying the same thing. They are so overwhelmed by the situation.”

Young emphasizes the lack of recourse for landlords, hindering the pursuit of justice. “The landlord has no recourse in terms of being able to file the criminal charges, because a lot of this is they break and enter and that is a criminal act.”

Data sourced from: foxnews.com