Given that it’s the end of the year, we figure we would end on a light note. Clients often ask us about some of the incredible things that we have seen. We have seen both owners and residents take actions that are undeniably shocking. Even with all of that craziness, without a doubt, our most interesting cases always happen when a resident claims to be a sovereign citizen.

Imagine this… you enter into a written lease with a resident who has a good job and qualifies to live in your property. Everything is going well for six-months and you don’t hear any complaints from the tenant. However, in month 7, the rent check is not paid and instead you receive a letter, which is signed via a fingerprint and contains an “bond” or a “International Bill of Exchange” and directs you to cash the document by contacting Nancy Pelosi or another similar government employee. You don’t know what to do with the documents. You never received any rent, so you should continue with your normal process of serving the nonpayment of rent notice and filing an eviction once it has expired.

Imagine still, once you file the eviction, you receive a packet of documents from your resident. In these documents, the resident claims that they are an “agent for the person with the name (name of your resident)” although they are not in fact the person themselves. The “resident” is merely a trust entity, and they are an individual separate from the trust. If this wasn’t confusing enough, they allege that they do not recognize the authority of the court and cite and quote numerous laws in support of their claims. When they get to court, they refuse to state their name, and only claim that they represent the entity that is a named defendant. While they may claim many different titles, they are likely a sovereign citizen.

While there are many different variations on the theme, sovereign citizens believe that the government set up by the founding fathers was secretly replaced by new laws. Therefore, they claim they do not recognize such “new” laws and only recognize the original founding documents. They write things such as: “Some how the
American People think this law has gone away see attached. At the same time attempting to keep their fellow man enslaved with the federal reserve. Some of us read and daily are attempting to get out of this enslavement. The next attachment will be the 1040V which is a payment voucher.”

Moreover, they believe that each individual person when they are born and get a social security number, is an entity created by the government and that they as a person are separate from that entity. They claim that the name listed on their birth certificate is the “trust” and that they are the separate, individual person.

When faced with such matters, there are numerous actions a property owner can take to pursue their eviction. What is most important is that you still have a case to prove and you should not get distracted by the inane arguments presented by a resident. If you want to see this legal argument in action, check out this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vRySQ8rSs9E

by Mark Zinman, Zona Law Group