Experienced Attorneys at Bratton Scott Fight Wrongful Evictions in NJ, PA and South Florida
There are many reasons a landlord may opt to take action to evict a tenant. The most common of these are non-payment of rent, disorderly conduct, damage to the property and violations of the lease. However, there are strict lines of protocol which must be followed exactly in order to legally evict a tenant in NJ, PA and FL.
If you believe your landlord is trying to evict your family unlawfully, it is imperative that you have highly skilled legal representation with experience in this specific area. The attorneys at Bratton Scott are well-versed in all facets of real estate law, including eviction lawsuits. We will take the time to listen to your individual needs an ensure that you understand all of your rights and options.
Landlords Must Follow Strict Guidelines When Attempting to Evict Tenants in NJ, PA and FL
In many instances, an eviction is warranted. However, that doesn’t mean the landlord can change the locks and prevent you from entering your home and having access to your belongings. There are guidelines landlords must follow in New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Florida to properly evict a tenant.
However, in our many years of practicing real estate law, we have witnessed countless situations in which the landlord is at fault. For example, non-payment of rent sounds like a justifiable reason for evicting a tenant. However, if the non-payment was in response to the landlord’s refusal to pay agreed upon utilities or for necessary repairs, the situation becomes much more complicated. Similarly, if the tenant can prove that the eviction was discriminatory or retaliatory in nature, there might be good reason to challenge its legality.
If you believe your landlord hasn’t followed the proper protocol, it’s important to contact an experienced real estate lawyer who understands eviction laws and will work tirelessly to protect your rights. At Bratton Scott, our real estate lawyers have been helping clients in New Jersey, Philadelphia, PA, and throughout South Florida negotiate and solve tenant-landlord disputes.
We have been voted top attorneys by legal peers and clients in the communities we serve. This is because we provide focused, personalized service to each and every client, based on each person’s unique legal needs. Before we advise, we listen. We ensure that you understand your options before moving forward, and we remain your greatest advocate throughout the entire process. You can rely on Bratton Scott to focus on achieving the best possible outcome for your situation. We will protect your rights. Contact us today.
The Eviction Process: How It Works
There are legal guidelines that landlords must follow when attempting to evict a tenant. First, the landlord must have a legal reason for wanting to evict a tenant. If there is a legal reason, the landlord must follow specific protocols to properly evict the tenants.
- Non-payment of rent – The landlord is not necessarily required to give notice before proceeding with an eviction lawsuit.
- Disorderly conduct and rental unit damage – Disorderly conduct includes fighting with neighbors o playing music too loud. The landlord has to give written notice prior to proceeding with an eviction lawsuit. This notice is called a Notice to Cease. If the disorderly conduct continues, the landlord must give a Notice to Quit before the eviction lawsuit can be filed. For rental unit damage, the landlord can go straight to a Notice to Quit.
- Rental agreement or lease violations – Common lease violations include housing a pet when pets are not allowed or having an unauthorized guest. In these cases, the landlord must issue a Notice to Cease if there is a violation. If the violation continues, NJ State Statute sets forth the specific timeframes that are required for each violation before a landlord can proceed with eviction. If these deadlines are not properly followed, the eviction may be challenged by the tenant.
Bratton Scott Assists Clients in Challenging Wrongful Evictions
A landlord may not simply change the locks or attempt to remove the tenant from the property by any other means without a court-approved eviction notice. If your landlord has taken or is threatening to take this unlawful approach, contact an experienced lawyer at Bratton Scott right away for assistance. We will protect your tenant’s rights.
Further, even if the landlord followed every rule to a ‘T’, it is still possible for the tenant to win an eviction lawsuit if there is proof of any of the following:
- The landlord used ‘Self-Help’ to evict the tenant – If the landlord attempted to evict the tenant without going to court, the tenant may be able to sue for damages. For instance, if the landlord changed the locks or turned off the utilities, this would qualify as an illegal “self-help” procedure.
- The landlord evicted the tenant in retaliation – A landlord may not evict a tenant for exercising his right to complain to a government agency above the landlord’s violation of health or safety codes. Similarly, a tenant cannot be evicted for participating in a lawful organization. If the tenant can prove the eviction was in retaliation for either of these circumstances, the eviction may be considered unlawful.
Additionally, if the landlord is falsely accusing you of not paying rent, your lawyer will be able to use evidence, such as canceled checks, in an effort to challenge the eviction.
If You Have Been Wrongfully Evicted, Contact an Attorney You Can Trust
If you are experiencing landlord/tenant disputes, facing eviction, or you wish to inquire about landlord rights or tenant rights, contact the seasoned real estate lawyers at Bratton Scott today. We will review your case and provide sound legal guidance that protects your tenant’s rights.
We have multiple conveniently located offices to serve clients in New Jersey, Philadelphia and Florida. Call us at 856-857-6007 for a consultation about your wrongful eviction today.