Young, Lind, Endres & Kraft
Handset 812.945.2555
Directions 126 West Spring Street
New Albany, IN 47150

Real Estate Newsletter

Unlawful Detainer Actions

In a typical lease agreement, the landlord will usually reserve the right to evict a tenant that fails to pay rent. Eviction of “holdover” tenants (those who fail to leave upon the expiration of the lease term) is also generally permitted.

Most states forbid the landlord from resorting to self-help; instead, the landlord must adhere to local laws and pursue available legal remedies.

Legal Remedies

Statutes exist in nearly all jurisdictions that permit landlords to use “summary proceedings” to evict tenants. A summary proceeding is a judicial proceeding that permits the landlord to regain possession of leased property in an expedited fashion. An unlawful detainer action is an example of such a proceeding – it grants the landlord a speedy remedy for the recovery of rental property.

However, a landlord may only utilize an unlawful detainer action when the tenant is in unlawful possession of the rented premises (e.g., a holdover tenant or one who has failed to pay rent). Further, before the landlord may initiate an unlawful detainer action, he must first demand that the tenant relinquish possession of the property.

Self-Help Remedies

In jurisdictions where a statute provides for an unlawful detainer action, the landlord typically may not resort to self-help (physical force) to evict a tenant. Instead, the landlord must utilize the legal process in order to regain possession of the property.

Today, a majority of states follow the modern rule requiring landlords to pursue available legal remedies. California, for example, strictly forbids the use of self-help. To legally evict a tenant in California, the landlord must first serve the tenant with notice, and then wait for the statutory period of time. If the tenant fails to comply with the terms of the notice within that period of time, the landlord may then file an unlawful detainer action to regain possession.

However, other jurisdictions have not yet abolished self-help as a remedy to evict a tenant. While a few jurisdictions authorize any entry that does not involve violence or a breach of the peace, other jurisdictions consider mere threats of force to be equivalent to forcible entry, even if no force is actually used.

Procedure

An unlawful detainer statute will typically require the landlord to give the tenant notice to vacate the property. Typically, a specific number of days must pass before the landlord may terminate the lease and initiate the unlawful detainer action.

Furthermore, the landlord must comply with the terms of the unlawful detainer statute, even if the rental agreement permits the landlord to repossess the property and eject the tenant.

  • Zoning Restrictions on Land Use
    “Zoning” is a system of laws and ordinances by which the use and development of land is regulated. The concept of planning for the development of a city or town is well established. The concept of zoning, however, is more... Read more.
  • Renters Insurance Protects Possessions
    Like homeowners insurance, renters insurance may be purchased to cover specific liabilities associated with renting property. However, renters insurance lacks the same breadth of coverage. The terms, conditions, laws and regulations for... Read more.
  • ILSFDA Protects Individuals from Land Sale Scams
    Prompted by an increase in land sale scams in the 1960’s, Congress passed the Interstate Land Sales Full Disclosure Act (ILSFDA) in 1968. Administered by the Federal Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the ILSFDA... Read more.
  • Architects as Arbiters in Construction Disputes
    Architects generally play three distinct roles in the construction process: (1) agent of the owner, (2) independent contractor and (3) arbiter. An architect serves as an arbiter to settle differences between the owner and contractor... Read more.
Real Estate News Links
Share This Page:
Designed and Powered by NextClient

© 2014 - 2021 Young, Lind, Endres & Kraft. All rights reserved.
Theme WebExpress™ attorney website design by NextClient.com.