Unlawful Forceable Entry
While there are some cases where evicting a tenant is lawful, all too often, landlords will illegally evict tenants by failing to follow the proper eviction procedures.
A forcible entry is where the landlord, or new property owner, enter your unit without your permissible and evict you, by getting rid of your belongings and taking other actions, without your permission, in the unit. A forcible entry is proper only where the landlord has taken appropriate steps to evict you, and you have failed to leave. However, all too often, the landlord fails to take the proper steps before evicting a tenant and removing their belongings.
In order to be able to properly evict a tenant, the landlord must go through the proper court proceedings of an unlawful detainer lawsuit to evict you.
Generally, for an eviction to be proper, the must provide the tenant with a notice of termination or notice to quit. This notice generally has an expiration date. Once this notice expires, the landlord can then file an unlawful detainer (eviction) lawsuit in the applicable court, and must give the tenant notice of the unlawful detainer lawsuit that has been filed against the tenant. The tenant has a certain period of time to respond to the complaint and appear in court before the court ultimately makes the decision as to whether the tenant can be evicted. Only then can the tenant actually be lawfully evicted. Until that time, any entry by the landlord into the unit, or removal of the tenant’s belongings is wrongful.
Even if the eviction is proper, State and city laws dictate under what conditions the landlord can remove the tenant’s property if the tenant abandoned the property or a writ of restitution has been served on the tenant. In certain situations, the landlord may be able to sell the tenant’s property, however, very specific criteria must be met, such as providing the tenant with notice and opportunity to retrieve the belongings. Generally, even if the eviction was done lawfully, if the tenant sends a written demand for the return of his or her property, the landlord is generally required to return the property.
The eviction process in California is complex and many landlords don’t follow the proper eviction procedures for evicting their tenants. It is vital to hire an experienced attorney right away. The experienced attorneys at the Harouni Law Group can help you in these situations.
With the help of our attorneys, you can seek remediation of the issue and in many cases, receive financial compensation for the wrongful eviction.