Philadelphia Tenant Evictions Lawyer
If you need assistance in the process of evicting either a residential or commercial tenant, The Law Offices of Greg Prosmushkin, P.C. can help. In Philadelphia, problem tenants are a serious complication for landlords, as they can negatively impact the Landlord’s bottom line. If you would like to go about evicting a problem tenant, we can help you proceed accordingly throughout the process, and handle any legal issues that may arise.
Grounds for Eviction
As a landlord, you are bound by the stipulations of the Pennsylvania Landlord Tenant Act of 1951. As such, you may only evict for these reasons:
- Non-payment of rent
- Hold over tenancy
- Serious breach of lease provision, and
- Tenant engaged in criminal drug-related activity on premises. That said, any of these reasons are sufficient alone to move for eviction. Therefore, we will carefully craft our case to convince the court that you are acting in accordance with the act, and that eviction is appropriate in your circumstance
Please remember, you may not engage in self-eviction. Under no circumstances are you permitted to take it upon yourself to change the locks, or discontinue utility services in order to force a constructive eviction upon your tenant. If you do so, you would certainly damage your ability to validly evict this tenant later. Contact a lawyer and make sure you use the appropriate legal channels.
The Eviction Process
- Step 1: Notice. You are required to provide the tenant notice of your intent to evict.
- Step 2: Filing Suit. If the tenant does not vacate after the appropriate notice period has expired, your attorney may file a complaint.
- Step 3: Hearing. Both parties are required to appear on the set hearing date. If either party fails to do so, the court may decide to impose a default judgment against the non-appearing party.
- Step 4: Form of Resolution. At this juncture, the parties will be given the opportunity to either agree to attempt resolution via negotiation between parties, via mediation, or contest. If the parties fail to agree, contest will be the default, and a trial will be held. If negotiation or mediation are agreed to, any agreement created at court is binding. Failure by the tenant to adhere to the results of negotiation or mediation will force the continuation of the eviction process.
- Step 5: Contest. If a trial is desired, mediation fails, or either party defaults on an in court agreement, then contest will ensue. The tenant may at this point agree to Judgment for Possession by Agreement, meaning they will vacate within a specified period of time. If this does not occur, the tenant will have 10 days to appeal upon your winning at trial.
- Step 6: Sheriff. If the tenant remains after judgment and the expiration of the appeals window, your attorney will file a Writ of Possession with the sheriff’s office. The sheriff will the post notice to vacate at the site of the lease. The tenant has ten additional days to vacate as of this posting. On day eleven, your attorney will file an Alias Writ and the sheriff will schedule a lockout. On that day, the sheriff will forcefully enter the premises if necessary and the tenant will be removed from the property and locked out.
Why Do I Need an Attorney?
We, of course, hope that not all of the steps outlined above are necessary, however, it is impossible to know with certainty how such situations will unfold, and it is in your best interest to be prepared for resistance. The Law Offices of Greg Prosmushkin, P.C. will be your partner in establishing your control over your property once again. Call today to schedule a free initial consultation with one of our landlord-tenant attorneys.
This content was written on behalf of Greg Prosmushkin.