Whether you own residential or commercial real estate, it’s quite possible that you’ll have to evict tenants at some point; this is the ugly part of the business, and it can get messy if you don't know your way around the eviction process.
Continue reading to learn about some common defenses that your tenant might put forward once you serve them with an eviction notice.
1. Unlawful Eviction
There are several reasons why a landlord would want to evict tenants, such as a failure to pay rent, lease agreement violations, drug use, illegal activity within the premises, and so on. But it's categorically illegal to evict a tenant for retaliatory or discriminatory purposes.
The government and judiciary protect tenants from unlawful eviction by giving them the opportunity to sue their landlord. Moreover, they can also file a counterclaim if you:
· Force them out of the rental property
· Prevent them from accessing their home
· Change the locks without telling them
· Bar the doors or install security cameras without their consent
· Become an intolerable nuisance
· Cut off the gas or electricity supply
· Harass the tenant
All of these violations could result in a hefty penalty.
1. Undealt With Property Repairs
Speaking of counterclaims, another popular counterclaim for escaping an eviction notice involves your tenant notifying the court about the property being in a state of disrepair.
Therefore, it's imperative to maintain proper documentation and legal proof of all the repair and installation work you've done in the rented space.
2. Unclear and Improper Notice
Your tenant can rightfully file a defense claim if you make one of the mistakes:
· Not serving the notice in writing.
· Handing it over to a senior citizen or someone else who cannot accept the notice
· Not serving the notice in person
· Serving a notice without valid reasons
3. Action Against Retaliatory/Discriminatory Notice
Although most evictions in the US occur due to the tenant defaulting on rental payments, families with children and those that experience domestic violence are at higher risk.
Think again if you’re planning to serve such a tenant with a retaliatory eviction notice. Tenants’ defenses include:
· Using tenant laws, as implemented by local or federal bodies
· Reporting you to a regulatory agency
· Forming or joining a tenants’ association that works against wrongful eviction claims
How Can We Help You?
If you're seeking the assistance of experienced eviction paralegals and attorneys in Beverly Hills, California, contact us right away. We will help you avoid financial and mental distress by preparing fast, efficient strategies that will enable you to navigate your eviction claim, toward a beneficial outcome.