Landlord-tenant laws are quite difficult to understand, primarily because they may differ greatly from state to state. In Texas, state law gives a landlord or property owner the right to evict a particular tenant. Tenants violating the lease or rental agreement, for example, maybe evicted from your personal property. Violations aside, common grounds for evicting would be non-payment of rent, unlawful stay, or refusal to move out or vacate the premises of the rental property even after a notice of termination.
While it may seem obvious that a landlord may evict a tenant who is unable to pay rent or who violates the rental or lease agreement, keep in mind that tenant eviction is a legal process. Terminating without cause must still comply with the relevant landlord-tenant law. As such, expert legal aid must be sought early on.
Before you can evict a tenant, you must first legally terminate his or her tenancy through a proper notice of termination.
Under the relevant landlord-tenant law, a termination notice may be grounded for different reasons. Whether a tenancy is a month-to-month or fixed term, it may generally be terminated without cause as long as the landlord puts the notice in writing. (Get legal assistance from a trusted lawyer to learn more about ‘without cause’ termination.)
When evicting a tenant with a month-to-month agreement, the actual payment of rents comes into play. For tenants who pay the rent once every month, the tenancy will likely end thirty days after the landlord was able to deliver the notice of termination. For tenants paying rent more than once every month (every 15 days, for example), the tenancy will likely end when the same number of days have passed after the notice is served. While the mode of rent payment is a common determiner of the amount of notice, the actual end of tenancy must be specified in the written notice. The date when renters must move out of the rental unit must also be specified.
Holdover tenants, or those who refuse to move out after rental or lease termination, are often given a three-day notice to vacate. If the person renting the property still refuses to vacate the property after three days, your next step would be going to court. Some landlords try to negotiate, but if the tenant has no plans of vacating, get legal advice from an expert on eviction proceedings. Go to court to file an eviction lawsuit (such court proceedings are sometimes referred to as a forcible entry and detainer suit).
When dealing with holdover tenants, never attempt to change the locks, shut off utilities, bring out belongings of the former renter, or let in a new tenant. Eviction laws are specific on how to evict tenants legally, without impinging on their rights. As such, you need to get legal help. Otherwise, the tenant you wanted to evict may turn the tables and sue you for illegally evicting him or her.
A tenant who got evicted and claims that his or her tenant rights were violated may decide to sue you and bring matters to court. A court hearing for an illegal eviction case is something you would not want, especially since all you wanted was to initiate peaceful eviction proceedings.
Get a lawyer from a trusted law firm to help you fill out paperwork for your eviction case. Contact us at Girling Law, PLLC for legal assistance.