If you are facing the prospect of eviction in New York City, you may be confused and nervous about the process. The process of eviction is normally fairly straightforward. There are several opportunities available to assist you from losing your home and to prepare you for the process. Here are five things you should expect during the eviction process:
- You should receive a notice from the Landlord before the eviction process begins
- In New York, depending upon whether you are being evicted for non-payment of rent or for a breach of the lease or for having no lease, you are entitled to notice before you can be legally evicted. You must be notified in writing by your landlord, which gives you a potential opportunity to cure whatever issues are that could result in your eviction. It also gives you a chance to speak to a lawyer about discussing any potential defenses you may have.
- You cannot be evicted in New York without going to court
- Unlike in some other states, landlords cannot simply force tenants out of their apartments on their own. After receiving the applicable notice from the landlord, the landlord must bring a lawsuit against a tenant who has failed to pay rent or has otherwise violated the terms of their lease. Only if they succeed in court does the eviction process move ahead.
- You will need to keep track of all your paperwork
- Evictions come with a lot of paperwork, and you will need to keep track of it all. In addition to the official notice of eviction, you will need to make sure you have bank statements, rent receipts and other records that may be able to defend your position. You should also record how the landlord serves you with any eviction notices or court papers if you discuss your case with a lawyer. If you lose track of anything important, it could severely impact your ability to defend yourself in the eviction process.
- Your security deposit may not be returned
- Under normal circumstances, a landlord is supposed to return your security deposit after your lease ends if there are no damages to the apartment. However, if you are being evicted for reasons such as unpaid rent, you may not be able to get your security deposit back. It depends upon why you are being evicted, and how much you owe from unpaid rent or lease violations.
- Law enforcement will carry out a court ordered eviction
- Landlords cannot legally remove residential tenants out of their apartments without a court order and a warrant from a marshal. If the landlord obtains a judgment authorizing the eviction, a member of law enforcement (such as a marshal or sheriff) will undertake your removal from the apartment. Using other means to evict a tenant, including using force or threats of force, is illegal.
If you are in a dispute with your landlord and want to know more about protecting yourself, do not wait until it is too late. You should seek advice from an attorney experienced in handling landlord-tenant disputes, who can advise you on your rights and help you avoid the risk of eviction. Contact the skilled landlord-tenant attorneys at Hobson-Williams, P.C. Contact us online, toll-free (866) 825-1529 or (718) 210-4744 to discuss your rights and the solutions available to you.