Flying the nest 
While British news headlines have been dominated by the planned eviction of travellers camped illegally at the Dale Farm site in Essex, an elderly couple in Italy have turned to their country’s law for help with an eviction of their own – their adult son.

With an increasing number of adults in the UK continuing to live with their parents, largely due to the difficulty many face getting a foot on the property ladder, there will undoubtedly be quite a few households where parents would prefer their grown-up children to fly the nest.

However, it is unlikely that any of them would go quite as far as the unnamed couple from Venice, who are taking legal action to force their 41-year-old son to move out.

The couple say that their son demands that his clothes are washed and ironed and that his meals are prepared. He has a job, but has no plans to leave home, despite his parents’ pleas.

The father claims that his wife has been hospitalised due to the stress caused by their son’s refusal to leave.

Having exhausted all other avenues, the couple have now turned to consumer association Adico, which says hundreds of Italian families face similar problems with getting adult children to move out. The couple got in touch with Adico after hearing of a similar case where a son was persuaded to leave home – with his parents changing the locks after he left.

So what happens next? A lawyer has already written to the Venetian couple’s son, advising him to leave home in six days or face legal action. If he refuses to do so, lawyers will apply to a court in Venice for a protection order for the parents.

If he still refuses to leave, it is likely that a breach of a court order would result in the son finding himself in the dock.

This may be another country with its own legal jurisdiction, but there will undoubtedly be countless parents across Britain who would quite happily see such measures introduced here.

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