Here is a completely hypothetical question.

If I wanted to take a homeless person off the street, and let them move into a spare room/house, do they have any tenant's rights (i.e. I can't kick them out without a huge legal headache and court orders and such)?

If they have the aforementioned rights, can they "sign away" these rights prior to moving in?

How is the situation altered if consideration is involved? For example, if I wanted to have the person as a live-in housekeeper, where their continued stay in the house would be based on their work.

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    Jurisdiction please – Shazamo Morebucks Jun 16 '17 at 17:17
  • USA - and for whatever state it is most feasible is perfect. Thanks :D – return true Jun 16 '17 at 20:01
  • Laws probably vary at a state level as well (with regards to what rights you can/cannot waive). Giving a hypothetical state would be helpful too. Hard to give generalist answers on this kind of question – Shazamo Morebucks Jun 16 '17 at 21:03

As user6726 said, a contract to sign away statutory tenant rights is virtually never going to be enforceable. Tenancy is a situation that basically always involves contracts; the whole point of statutory rights is to limit the scope of these contracts. Waiving tenancy rights would be sort of like waiving minimum wage.

"Consideration" doesn't change anything, because it's assumed when you're talking about contracts. A contract without consideration is void. However, while your example of consideration isn't really what "consideration" means, it is a possible exception to tenancy rights. Certain situations are generally excluded from statutory tenancy rights; for instance, being in the hospital for two months doesn't make you a tenant. RCW 59.18.050 (to go with user6726's Washington theme) also excludes

Occupancy by an employee of a landlord whose right to occupy is conditioned upon employment in or about the premises.

In other words: You can provide your employee with housing that they only keep as long as they work for you, and in that case they're not a tenant. A live-in housekeeper is a perfect example of this.

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  • This is so very interesting... thanks so much for your answer – return true Jun 18 '17 at 6:45

Washington state is the most feasible. RCW 59.18.085(6)(c) states that "An occupancy agreement, whether oral or written, in which the provisions of this section are waived is deemed against public policy and is unenforceable". Accordingly, you cannot sign away your statutory rights. I don't know of any state where you can.

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The state constitution and laws made thereunder automatically apply to everyone via the recognized police power. You can't opt out unless the law explicitly states you can, as pointed out in another answer. Every state's laws are different.

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