When a landlord agrees to rent a piece of his property to a tenant, he and the tenant execute a document called a lease agreement. That document is honored by the state as a legally binding contract. Thus, both parties are bound to honor the terms of the contract. Otherwise, the violator may be sued for breach of contract. 

In the tenant’s case, the most common form of violation is non-payment of the lease or rent.  However, the tenant may also violate the contract in other ways.  The lease agreement may have provisions on the length of time a guest may stay, the number of pets allowed, and/or the manner in which the property may be used (e.g., commercial or residential use).  In such a case, the landlord has the option to file legal action against his tenant.

A lawsuit of this nature is called an unlawful detainer. The landlord files this legal action because he cannot enter the premises of the tenant without his permission. Moreover, the landlord cannot just tell the tenant to leave his premises. The landlord must seek judicial intervention to assert his rights against the tenant. Thus, if the court sides with the landlord, it will order the tenant to leave the premises.  If the tenant is in arrears with his rent payment, the court will likewise order him to pay the back rentals plus damages to the landlord.

Even with a court order the tenant should not be forcibly evicted.  The court will stipulate a date for the tenant to leave the premises.  If the tenant refuses to leave even after the date set by the court, the landlord may file a Writ of Possession.  Such Writ authorizes a legal figure such as a sheriff or marshall to enter the premises of the landlord and compel the tenant to leave.  This of course will pose an embarrassing situation to the tenant.  To avert such a situation, the tenant will be given 24-hour notice of his eviction.

If you need assistance in removing your tenant because of the non-payment of rent or some other breach in the operative lease agreement, contact our office today for assistance.

Contact our Law Firm today if you need to discuss a potential breach of contact case.

Fresno Branch:

466 W. Fallbrook,
Suite 102
Fresno, CA 93711
T: (559) 431-4888
F: (559) 821-4500

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10509 Vista Sorrento Pkwy., Suite 430
San Diego, CA 92121
T: (619) 399-7700
F: (619) 819-8400

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