Understanding and adhering to the legal process to evict a tenant is essential for successfully removing a tenant from the property. If not done correctly, the entire eviction could be declared void. Worse still, the move could backfire with the tenant suing the landlord and recovering damages in court. The eviction proceedings may vary slightly across different jurisdictions, but the principles are relatively constant. The following are the general steps to evict a tenant from your property.
Identifying the rationale
This first step involves establishing valid claims for deciding to evict a tenant. An eviction with an unlawful rationale would probably fail. Therefore, the landlord must ensure their reasons are legally valid, such as violations of lease terms or non-payment of rent.
This step is initiated when the landlord serves the tenant with official documentation notifying them of their misconduct. The document may include a charge and request to rectify the situation or an express declaration of impending tenant eviction. Usually, the landlord is required by law to serve the tenant with a specific period to resolve the reason for the notice, which varies according to the state or local municipality.
In this step, the landlord drafts a legal document confirming their intent to evict a tenant after a set period. An experienced contract lawyer can help prepare the document, or the landlord can download a customized template to fit the situation. This 100-percent safe eviction notice template can significantly streamline the drafting process.
Attending the court hearing
Both sides of the case are heard by a judge in a court proceeding. The landlord has a reasonably good chance of winning a judgment if they have followed the legal process to evict a tenant.
After the court has approved the eviction, the tenant will be given an ultimatum to vacate the property. According to tenant eviction laws, if the allowed time lapses before the tenant moves out, the landlord has the legal right to enlist the help of law enforcement to execute the court’s eviction order. The court may also grant the landlord the relief of past due rent and damages where applicable.