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New Laws for 2015
DELAY TACTICS OF TENANTS - UPDATE - OCT. 2013
Can Bankruptcy Stop An Eviction?
NEW LAWS FOR 2013
The Latest Eviction Delay Tactics

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2013 - New Landlord/Tenant Laws
Eviction Blog
Eviction Delay Tactics
Money Judgments and Collection
New Eviction Laws in Effect on January 1, 2011
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New Laws for 2015

I have included an articles published by one of my favorite websites regarding new laws for 2015.  Also, fees have gone up for the Sheriff from $125 to $145.  

DELAY TACTICS OF TENANTS - UPDATE - OCT. 2013

The most prevalent delay tactic at the moment is that tenants will file bankruptcy the day before trial and force its continuation.  First they will file a Chapter 7.  You then wait two weeks for the Trustee in Bankruptcy to throw it out due to lack of Schedules, or one of the mandated disclosure documents.  If you're lucky, you continued the trial date for a month, because then the next antic they pull is to file a Chapter 13.  Then it's another 2-week wait.  The Trustee will automatically kick it out if the necessary documents are not provided, but they've already bought themselves a month in delay.

Can Bankruptcy Stop An Eviction?

A bankruptcy can stop an eviction, but it depends on whether or not it is a "skeletal" bankruptcy or a bona fide filing.  A "skeletal" bankruptcy is one that is done with the bare-bones documents in order to get it on file.  That is, the Petition, the list of three main creditors, the credit counseling certification and the Declaration regarding the Debtor's  Social Security number.  In a bona fide filing, these documents would be filed, but also the filing would include Schedules, which are detailed documents reflecting the true financial picture of the Debtor.

NEW LAWS FOR 2013

There are some new laws that were enacted at the beginning of the year.  Below is a synopsis:
Landlord May Dispose Abandoned Personal Property Less Than $700
Commencing January 1, 2013, the total resale value of personal property left behind by a tenant after termination of a tenancy that the landlord must sell at a public auction (rather than dispose of or retain for his or her own use), has been increased from $300 to $700, if certain procedures are followed. This law, however, also prohibits a landlord from assessing any storage cost if the tenant reclaims personal property within 2 days of vacating the premises.

The Latest Eviction Delay Tactics

Because you can find anything you want on the internet, there are many new delay tactics out there that are being utilized by defendants in unlawful detainer actions.  The latest is the removal of the case from state court to federal court by feigning a federal court issue.  This does work in delaying the matter for a few weeks, but it is risky and the federal courts are wise to it.  Also, the Defendant is leaving the door open for sanctions, which the courts are now granting with regularity.

IS COLLECTING A DEBT THROUGH SMALL CLAIMS A HARD THING TO DO?

I recently had to take two of my clients to Small Claims Court in order to get paid and, although it was nerve-wracking and scary to prepare a case, appear in front of a judge and speak in front of a room full of people, it was so worth it.
 
I was owed $2,500 by one of my clients and another $550 from another.  I had both matters heard the same day in the same court -- that worked out!  I got my money in both cases.
 
Some tips for success now that I've done it three times:
 

Buying Property With Existing Tenants

Whether you are buying foreclosed properties or are just buying REO properties through MLS, how do you deal with a pre-existing tenant situation?  I have pulled together some legal research (see below), and it says that "the new owner takes the place of the seller and becomes the new landlord." (Section 8.7)  So, if you are a new owner, and you assume the lease, you need to notify the tenant that you are the new owner and where they are to send the rental payments.  The tricky questions arise if they default on the lease and they were tenants under a prior owner that lost the property in foreclosure, and the trustee's sale took place less than a year ago.

Buying A Foreclosure Property With Tenants

So, you've bought a home in a trustee's sale on the courthouse steps and you've just found out that the prior owners are not living there, but tenants of the prior owners are.  What does that mean?  According to the "Tenants in Foreclosure Act of 2009", that means that you have to give them 90 days' notice before filing an eviction complaint with the court.  Yes, 90 days.  The notice also has to have a special cover sheet entitled "Notice to Renters" which has specific language with regard to where the tenants can receive legal aid or legal help, and encouraging them to do so.

How Much Can A Tenant Delay An Eviction?

With the onset of the foreclosure craze has come a barrage of information on the internet regarding how to delay an eviction.  It used to be that very few were savvy enough to drag out an eviction for too long.  If a tenant doesn't do anything and is fairly easy to serve, the Sheriff can come within 3-4 weeks from the date of the filing of the complaint.
 
However, most tenants and/or occupants are filing answers -- which means that the case must be set for trial and it is a good idea to be represented by an attorney for the court appearance -- or they are filing Demurrers (documents which say the complaint or the notice is wrong on its face) or Motions to Quash Service (process server goofed).

Eviction After A Trustee's Sale

Has your home been sold in a Trustee's Sale and you've just been served with a 3-day Notice to Quit?  Is there a real estate agent hounding you to sign a Move-Out Agreement?  Do they look shady and aren't showing you any documentation or proof of ownership?  Keep your doors shut and give us a call.  If someone truly has purchased your property on the courthouse steps, their next step will be to file an Unlawful Detainer action (eviction) and then serve you with a Summons and Complaint.
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