Q: What is a Holdover?
A: A Holdover is a case in which the landlord wants to evict the tenant and is not asking for money for failure to pay rent. The landlord may still seek to collect money, usually called use and occupancy, but the ultimate goal is eviction and not collection of monies. A holdover usually means you don’t have a lease but not always. Even if monies are paid (use and occupancy) the tenant can still be evicted. If you do have a lease, the landlord will need to serve you with a notice of termination before bringing a holdover to evict.
Q: What is a Nonpayment?
A: A nonpayment is a landlord tenant action in which the landlord seeks to collect monies for rent not paid. If the rent is paid the tenant gets to remain in the apartment. If the case goes to trial and the tenant loses, the tenant typically has five days within which to pay. If the tenant is unable to pay, the tenant can be evicted by the landlord. In a nonpayment action, if the tenant fails to appear (defaults) the landlord cannot collect rent on default but can still seek to evict the tenant.
Q: What is a demand notice?
A: A demand notice is the notice that comes before the petition in a nonpayment case. The notice, typically in letter form, is not a court document. It is simply a demand to pay the rent owed. If the tenant does not pay the rent by the time demanded in the notice, then the landlord may take the tenant to court to get a warrant of eviction. If the landlord seeks to take the tenant to court, the tenant will then be served with a notice of petition and petition for nonpayment of rent.
Q: I received a letter that says 30 day notice of termination, is this an eviction notice?
A: No, a 30 notice of termination is not an eviction notice. An eviction notice is from the marshal and it would normally says Notice of Eviction and has a case name and number. Click here to see an example.
Q: What is a 30 day Notice of Termination?
A: A 30 day notice of termination is a letter or notice required by law if you are a rent paying tenant. You get a notice that the landlord is terminating your lease or terminating your tenancy if you do not have a lease. At the end of the period noted in the notice, if you do not move then the landlord will may take you to court to start eviction proceedings.
Q: Do I have to move once I get a 30 day Notice of Termination?
A: Yes and No. Technically the notice is not a marshal eviction notice so you do not have to move and a marshal will not come based solely on the 30 day notice. However, if you chose to move before the 30 days expires that is fine. If you do not move after expiration of the 30 days the landlord will have to take you to court in order to evict you.
Q: Landlord wont take money what should I do?
A: Typically the landlord will not take your money once you have been served with a notice of termination. If the landlord does not accept your rent, the landlord is supposed to return the money to you. If the money is returned, it is absolutely important that for every month the landlord does not take your money that you
Q: How do I know when the landlord has taken me to court?
A: After the time to move according to the 30 day notice has expired the landlord or his/her attorney will have you served with a notice of petition and petition. See a sample here. If the case is a holdover, the notice of petition will tell you which court room, the date and the time to appear in court. If the case is a nonpayment, you have five days from receiving the notice of petition and petition to go to the clerk and file answer or get an attorney to do it for you. Either way, you should be ready to go to court.
Q: What are the consequences of going to court, if I don’t move out after the 30 day notice or the demand notice?
A: The possible consequence is that you get a judgment against you. It is important that you get a lawyer and that you appear to court to defend yourself.
Q: What if I miss my court date?
A: If you miss court date, a default judgment may be entered against you. Best practice is to go to the clerk and find out what happened to your case and what you should/can do next. IF there is a default judgment you should ask the clerk to do an order to show cause so that your case will be placed back on the calendar and give you an opportunity to defend yourself. In order to have a successful order to show cause you must be able to demonstrate a good reason why you did not show up and also explain what your defense would have been if you had shown up.
Q: The landlord locked me out what should I do?
A: Go immediately to you housing court and file what is called an “Order To Show Cause” asking the court to restore you to possession and to vacate the judgment against you. If you believe you have been illegally locked out, you should file “Illegal Lockout” Order to Show Cause. The clerk will help you complete the necessary forms and direct you on the next steps.