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How does the eviction process work?

On Behalf of | Feb 11, 2020 | Real Estate Litigation |

As a landlord you may wish to evict a tenant for a number of reasons. Typically, you base your reasoning on the terms of the lease. You may also have to evict a tenant at the end of a lease if he or she refuses to leave the property. According to the Georgia Department of Law, you cannot remove a tenant from your property without going through the court for a formal eviction regardless of the situation. 

You need to make sure that you have the legal right to evict by making sure the violation is in the lease. If your lease has a clause about notification, then you must follow it. You can demand that the tenant leaves the property and give him or her the chance to voluntarily leave. You should do this in writing and keep a copy as proof of service. 

If this does not remove the tenant, then you may file with the court. This dispossessory affidavit must include information about the money owed to you, the reason for removal, verification of your demand to vacate and information about you and the tenant. Once you file this, it begins the eviction and you can no longer try to collect rent. If the tenant tries to pay rent, you can have him or her pay it to the court. 

The tenant will then receive a summons and have the chance to file an answer explaining why he or she has not left the property or why he or she feels you have no right to evict. At this point, the tenant has to pay the court any overdue rent and keep rent payments current with the court to maintain rights to the property. 

You will then both attend a hearing and the court will make its ruling. If the court rules you have the right of possession, the tenant must leave within seven days.