Landlord tenant issues can arise for various reasons, including failure to pay rent, failure to pay on time, unauthorized occupants on the property, and criminal behavior. Here at Musi, Malone & Daubenberger LLP, we can walk you through the litigation process, including understanding your lease agreement, preparing required notices, and litigating your case. Whether you are a landlord or tenant in need of legal counsel regarding an eviction, please contact Musi, Malone & Daubenberger, L.L.P. at 610-891-8806.
What are the Most Common Breaches of Lease?
The most common breach of lease is failure to pay rent. If a tenant fails to pay rent, and the rent was not explicitly forgiven, the landlord can take the tenant to court and seek the rent owed, plus eviction. However, if failure to pay rent is the only breach, the court will issue a pay to stay, allowing the tenant to pay the rent owed, thus stopping the eviction process.
Another common breach of the lease is remaining in the property after the lease term has ended. In order to proceed for this breach, the law requires specific notices, and notice periods before filing for eviction.
How Does the Eviction Process Work?
- Required Notices: Before an eviction can be filed, the law requires certain notices be sent to the tenant, unless the notices are specifically waived in the lease. Should any of the notice requirements be missed, it can be fatal to the case.
- Filing: The first step to any eviction is filing a complaint at your local district court. Filing a complaint requires knowing all breaches of the lease agreement that have occurred. For that reason, it important that you understand the lease and the consequences of breaching it.
- Litigating: After the complaint has been filed, the district court will schedule a court date. At the court date, each side will have an opportunity to present their case to the Judge, ask questions of any testifying witness, and present documentation. Because the courts have strict rules on what documents are allowed, and what questions can be asked, retaining an attorney for this process is essential.
- Filing: Once you have won your case, the courts require you file additional notices, giving your tenants one last opportunity to leave the property on their own.
- Eviction: If the tenants remain on the property after all notices are sent, the landlord will be contacted by a constable to arrange to forcibly remove the tenants from the property.
It is important to note, that should either party be dissatisfied with the outcome of the district court hearing, they have the right to appeal the case. Appeals are heard by a panel of attorneys, in a trial like setting, who then render a verdict after each side has presented their case. Appeals can be expensive and have highly specific deadlines and rules. If a rule or deadline is missed, the case can be lost.
For any and all Landlord Tenant questions, please call Musi, Malone & Daubenberger, L.L.P. at 610-891-8806.