As a landlord, the time may come when you need to evict a tenant. Follow these tips from our eviction attorneys when serving an eviction notice in Miami.
When a tenant enters into a legal agreement with a landlord, both parties must follow the terms of the lease. It is important that you know your rights so you can protect yourself if you need to evict a tenant. Here, our eviction attorneys answer your top questions about serving an eviction notice in Miami.
What Are Legal Grounds For Eviction?
Before you serve an eviction notice, you need to know what you can and cannot use as grounds for eviction. Legal grounds for eviction include violating the lease agreement, not paying rent, committing a crime, or a number of other actions.
Once you have determined that the tenant needs to move out, it is important that you follow the process outlined in Florida’s eviction laws. As a landlord, you cannot do the following:
- Shut off a tenant’s utilities
- Change or remove a tenant’s locks
- Remove doors or windows
- Take property from the tenant’s residence
Landlords can be sued for damages if any of the above actions take place. If you have any questions about what your next steps are in the eviction process, you should contact an eviction attorney right away. Our eviction team at Casais & Prias can walk you through the process and ensure that you follow the guidelines set forth in Florida’s Landlord-Tenant Laws.
What Is The First Step When Serving An Eviction Notice In Miami?
Florida law requires a landlord to serve a tenant a three-day notice. This notice informs the tenant that you are beginning the eviction process and allows them three days to rectify the situation. This notice must precede an eviction lawsuit and it is crucial that it is filed.
Courts may ask for proof that the tenant received the three-day eviction notice, so you should use a certified process server, certified mail, or other methods that leave a paper trail and can serve as proof that the tenant received the notice.
What If A Tenant Refuses To Move Out After A Three-Day Notice?
If no resolution is reached during this three-day period, the landlord can file a lawsuit to evict with the county court. Your summons for eviction must contain the following information and is sent to the tenant via process server or sheriff’s office:
- Landlord’s contact information
- Property location
- Tenant’s violation
- Request for eviction
At this point, if you have not spoken with an eviction attorney, it is wise to get legal advice to make sure you are following the letter of the law. If any part of the process gets skipped, the tenant could have grounds for refusing the eviction.
Can My Eviction Lawsuit Go To Court?
If your tenant does not respond to the eviction notice, a hearing date will be set by the judge and your lawsuit will go to court. The landlord is required to physically appear at the hearing and you will need to supply all documentation supporting your claim. Our legal team can help prepare your case after serving an eviction notice in Miami.
How Can A Tenant Be Removed After Eviction?
If you are successful in proving the claims made in your eviction complaint, the judge will declare you the winner of the lawsuit, and the county clerk will provide you with a Writ of Possession. The sheriff’s office will then serve the tenant with the Writ and remove them from the property if necessary.
Serving an eviction notice in Miami is not complicated but you do need to follow the procedures closely. Having an eviction attorney on your team will help the process go smoothly so you can rent your property to a new tenant. Contact us today if you have questions about the eviction laws in Florida. We look forward to helping you with any of your legal concerns.