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How evictions work in Georgia

| Jan 6, 2021 | Real Estate Litigation |

If landlords are unhappy with their tenants, they may want the renters to move on to a different property. However, if there is a lease or rental agreement, a landlord cannot just kick out tenants for no reason. 

If there is a justified reason, the landlord my evict the tenants, but there is a specific process that the landlord must follow. 

Basic tenant rights and common tenancy issues

According to the Georgia Department of Community Affairs, the state requires certain tenant rights, with the main one being the prohibition of discrimination. When entering into a lease contract, each party should make sure that they are following the state’s laws and that the agreement outlines clear expectations of both parties. 

Some common issues that may come up during a lease term include repair and maintenance responsibilities, the nonpayment of agreed-upon utility bills by the landlord, restricted use of the unit and the wrongful withholding of the security deposit. 

Eviction process

The state does not have the power to intervene in a lease-related dispute, so the parties need to resolve it themselves or involve the courts. Some common reasons that landlords take legal action are because of rent nonpayment or the failure to move out at lease termination. 

These reasons may justify an eviction, but the Fulton County government outlines the steps a landlord must take. The first two steps involve the filing and serving of the dispossessory proceeding. If the tenant answers the dispossessory summons, there is a hearing where the court makes a decision. 

With a favorable judgment for the landlord, or if the tenant did not respond to the summons, the landlord requests a writ of possession that requires the tenant to move out after seven days. The landlord can then arrange to clear out the tenant’s property if the tenant does not move in time.