Overview of Evictions
Those who are tenants and renting out a property know that an agreement between them and the landlord should provide a detailed outline of each party’s rights. While the rental agreement can go into further detail on the eviction process, there are general guidelines that apply to almost all tenants in California. This article will provide a brief overview of the eviction process; however, those facing evictions are encouraged to seek legal help in order to defend against the eviction.
Why might a landlord evict a tenant?
The reasons can vary given the circumstances, but common answers regarding not paying rent on time, violating the agreement, and damaging the property. It is important to understand that if the landlord wants to evict the tenant legally, they must do so with a written notice. The notice will vary based on the situation, but the tenant should ensure that the notice is legally valid. If the tenant does not comply with the notice, the landlord can then file a Summons and Complaint in court for unlawful detainer. Due diligence will be followed in order to serve the papers to the tenant in person, otherwise, there may be substitutes or options for mailing the papers.
Once the tenant receives the Summons and Complaint, they must legally respond to the case in court, within the allotted time. The tenant must respond if they wish to defend themselves against the eviction. The Answer to the response must be properly filed with all required documentation and fees. Following the filing of the Answer, the landlord can request a trial date by filing the Request to Set Case for Trial. Both legal aid clinics and lawyers can help with the trial process, especially if motions need to be filed. Following the verdict, the tenant can appeal, but that won’t stop the eviction process. The only thing that can delay the eviction is a stay of execution. As with the entire process, it is vital that the tenant requests it in time and with the proper legal justification.