When To Issue A Texas Eviction Notice
Under Texas laws, the number of days landlords need to wait before they can charge a tenant late fees is two days. However, state laws dont have a similar requirement for giving tenants a Notice to Vacate for non-payment of rent.
So in Texas, landlords can issue an eviction order to evict tenants a day after the rent is already due. Once it is issued, the tenant will be given a three-day timeline to pay the unpaid rent , or the eviction proceedings will start and theyd have to vacate the property.
How Do You Remove A Forcible Detainer
If you have an eviction record on your background, you can petition the court in the county where the case was filed to have the record expunged, or sealed. This typically requires filing a petition with the court and paying a filing
Is forcible entry a crime?
Forcible entry is the entry onto anothers land accompanied by force, threat, violence, or other breach of the peace. The crime of forcible entry and detainer, like criminal trespass, is designed to prohibit the use of potentially violent private action in disputes over the rights to possession of property.
What does released to detainer mean?
physical custody As used in this section parole to a detainer means release to the physical custody of the authorities who have lodged the detainer. If the authorities who lodged the detainer do not take the prisoner into custody for any reason, he shall be returned to the institution to await further order of the Commission.
Occupant Alternatives When Served With Notice To Vacate For Nonpayment Of Rent In Texas
What happens next depends on the tenants response to the eviction notice:
If the occupant has the alternative to pay the lease within the three-day amount of time and does so, then the landlord must not proceed with the eviction.
If the renter does not pay the rent, however moves out within 3 days, the landlord might use the tenants down payment to cover the unsettled lease. If the down payment does not cover all the lease due and owing, consisting of late charges, then the landlord can sue the occupant for the rent still owed . If the occupant does not pay the complete rent within the three-day time period and does not move from the building, then the landlord can continue to submit a summons and grievance with the Texas justice court. This case is called a forcible detainer suit.
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Removal Of The Tenant
The only legal way to remove a tenant from a rental unit in Texas is for a landlord to win an eviction lawsuit in court. Even after winning the lawsuit, it is illegal for a landlord to take self-help measures to remove the tenant. The only person who can do that is an officer of the law, authorized by the judge who allowed the eviction to occur. Texas law has made it illegal for the landlord to personally remove the tenant from the rental unit. See Illegal Eviction Procedures in Texas for more information on the topic.
Information Included In Texas Eviction Notices
The notice to vacate must be in writing, and include the following information:
- date the notice was served on the tenant
- name and address of tenant rental unit
- the reason for the notice
- a statement that the tenant has three days to move out, including the final date and time by which the tenant must be out of the property
- an ultimatum that the landlord can pursue legal action if the tenant does not move, and
- a statement specifying how the notice was given to the tenant, either by actually giving the notice to the tenant or mailing the notice.
If the tenant has the option to pay rent, then the notice must also include a statement that the tenant has three days to either pay the rent due or move out.
If an eviction notice is missing key information, such as the time and date the tenant must be moved out of the rental unit, then the eviction notice will not be considered valid and the three days’ notice will not start. The landlord would then have to give a new notice to the tenant, restarting the three-day timeline, and the notice would have to include all of the information listed above.
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Next Procedure If The Tenant Disagreed And Replied
In the state of Texas, a reply from the tenant is not necessary for a court date to be scheduled. They only have to show up to the hearing.
If a tenant disagrees with the summons and complaint, the landlord can choose to settle with the tenant outside of court. If they come to an agreement, the landlord files for a nonsuit. This is to request a dismissal of the case.
If an agreement is not reached, then the responsibility of providing evidence falls on the landlord. The landlord needs to support the claim and show it during the hearing.
This could include, but is not limited to the following:
- Copy of the deed and the lease
- Rent receipts and ledgers
If the judge rules in favor of the tenant, the landlord has five days to appeal the ruling, and vice versa.
Evidence To Show For Not Paying Rent
If the tenant doesnât pay rent, and they dispute that claim, itâs important that you show the judge the following:
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How To Write A Texas Notice To Quit
A proper eviction notice should be written in accordance with Texan laws and the original lease agreement. Refer to these while drafting your notice and follow these steps:
Step 1: Declare the tenants name, property address, and contact information.
Step 2: Cite the lease information, including the lease period and signature date.
Step 3: Mention and define the breach of the lease agreement. Prescribe a course of action depending on the type of notice as follows:
- Non-payment of rent Indicate the rental period, due amount, applicable penalties, required payment method, and account number. Give the tenant 3 days to pay or vacate.
- Non-compliance Describe the violation, connect it to the lease, and give the tenant 3 days to rectify the matter or move out.
- Lease termination State the effective termination date and ensure it provides a 30-day notice.
Step 4: Clearly document your intent to take legal action if the tenant fails to respond appropriately by the set date.
Step 5: This step is completed by the agent that delivers the notice. Once delivery is made, they must sign the certificate of delivery, indicating the date, address, and method of delivery.
Details To Consider In Preparation Of Texas Eviction Notices
The Notice to Vacate need to be in composing, and consist of the following info:
- date the notice was served on the tenant.
- name and address of renter rental.
- the reason for the notice .a declaration that the renter has 3 days to leave, including the final date and time by which the renter must be out of the home.
- a final notice that the landlord might pursue legal action if the tenant does not move, and.
- a declaration specifying how the notice was offered to the tenant, either by in fact giving the notice to the occupant or mailing the notice.
If the renter has the option to pay rent, then the notice needs to be consistent with that statement so that the tenant has 3 days to either pay the lease due and owing or leave.
If an eviction notice is missing key details, such as the time and date the renter needs to be moved out of the rental unit, then the eviction notice will not be considered valid and the 3 Day Notice to Vacate will not be recognized by the courts. The landlord would then need to provide a new notice to the renter, starting a new three-day period, and the notice would need to consist of all the information listed above.
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What To Include In Texas Eviction Notices
Texas state law doesnt indicate what is required to be on every eviction notice however, its a good idea for the notice to include:
- The tenants name and contact information
- The date the tenancy will terminate
- The reason for the eviction
- What the tenant can do to correct the issue and avoid eviction and
- How much time the tenant has to correct the issue .
Its also good practice to get the tenants signature confirming that they received the eviction notice, if the notice was hand-delivered.
In addition, the landlord should keep the receipt number if the notice was delivered by certified or registered mail.
Eviction For Failure To Pay Rent
A landlord is allowed to evict a tenant for failing to pay rent on time.
According to Texas law, rent is late if not paid two full days after the due date. In Texas, a landlord does not need to give the tenant a chance to cure the violation. If the tenant does not move out before the notice period expires and remains on the property, the landlord may proceed with the eviction process.
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Landlord Options For Accepting Late Rent
In some states, a landlord cannot begin the eviction process before giving tenants an opportunity to either pay the late rent or move out of the rental unit. If the tenant pays the rent, then the termination proceedings do not continue. In Texas, however, landlords can choose whether or not to give tenants a second changethey are not required to do so. If the lease or rental agreement requires the landlord to give the tenant time to pay, the landlord must abide by its terms. .)
If the landlord chooses to give the tenant the option to pay the late rent, the landlord can give the tenant a reminder of rent due within a notice to vacate, and demand that the tenant pay the rent or vacate by the date in the notice. .)
If the landlord does not send notice to the tenant about owing rent before sending the tenant a notice to vacate, then the only option that will be available to the tenant is to move out.
How To File A Complaint
The eviction process can only begin after the issuance of the Notice to Vacate. The landlord must have allowed enough time to pass before filing for eviction.
The eviction process is as follows:
- Tenantâs name and contact details
- Landlordâs name and contact details
- Location and description of the rental property
- Reason for eviction
- Details about the tenantâs stay in the property
- Action taken with the Notice to Vacate
- Pending fees owed by the tenant
- Tenantâs involvement in the military
3. Pay the fees
Optional: Filing for an Immediate Possession Bond. It reduces the scheduling of the hearing from 20 days to 10 days after filing is passed. If the landlord wins the case, the repossession of their property is fast-tracked.
If this bond was filed, the landlord has to provide a Notice of Request to the tenant. Do note that filing it is risky because if the tenant wins, the money spent by the landlord goes to the court fees of the tenant.
In Texas, filing fees may start as low as $46 but go higher than $100 with an additional $130 for the Writ of Possession. Prices may vary from county to county.
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Things To Include In A Texas Eviction Notice
As a landlord, writing a proper notice of eviction is important if you want your eviction case to go smoothly. It should include the following:
- The date when the notice was issued to the tenants or renters
- The name and details of the property or rental housing
- The reason why an eviction notice is served
- A three-day notice period before getting evicted
- A demand indicating that legal action can be pursued, and an eviction lawsuit can be filed if the tenant or renter refuse to vacate the premises
Consequences Of Illegal Evictions
Retaliatory conduct is considered as a self-help eviction and is illegal in Texas. Landlords who are found guilty of retaliation can be sued by their tenants. Landlords can be liable for property damage, actual expenses, civil penalties, attorneys fees, and moving costs. The tenant can recover one months rent plus an additional $500.
Landlords must have legal reason to pursue an eviction action and cannot terminate a lease agreement without cause. In Texas, landlords must win the eviction lawsuit to legally remove a tenant.
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Petition Is Filed And Served
If the notice period ends and the tenant remains on the property, the next step in the eviction process requires the landlord to file a petition with the appropriate Justice of the Peace Court in Texas. In most counties, this costs around $46-$100 in filing fees.
The petition should include the following information:
- The landlord ant tenants legal name and contact information.
- The tenants date of birth, last three digits of their drivers license, and last three digits of their social security number.
- The address of the rental property.
- Grounds for eviction and the reason for eviction.
- The eviction notice date and delivery method.
- If the landlord is suing for rent or not.
- If the landlord is filing a bond for possession or not.
- If the tenant is in the military and on active duty.
- Other addresses of where the tenant can be served notice.
- The landlords request for a jury trial and consent for the tenants answer to be sent by email.
- Obtain a signature of a notary of the Clerk of the Justice Court.
Once the petition is filed, the court will create a citation which will be served to the tenant by the sheriff or constable at least six days prior to the eviction hearing.
The citation and complaint must be served on the tenant through one of the following methods:
Occupant Choices When Served With Notice To Vacate For Nonpayment Of Rent In Texas
What occurs next depends upon the tenants reaction to the eviction notice:
- If the renter has the alternative to pay the lease within the three-day time period and does so, then the landlord should not proceed with the eviction.
- If the renter does not pay the lease but moves out within three days, the landlord may use the tenants down payment to cover the unsettled lease. If the security deposit does not cover all the lease due and owing, consisting of late charges, then the landlord can take legal action against the renter for the rent still owed .
- If the tenant does not pay the full lease within the three-day period and does not move from the property, then the landlord can proceed to submit a summons and complaint with the Texas justice court. This proceeding is called a forcible detainer match.
Eviction Claims in Texas Justice Court.
The landlord needs to successfully win the forcible detainer case in the court before an officer of the law can lawfully seize the building. It is crucial that proprietors do not take part in self-help practices which they follow the procedures for filing the forcible detainer grievance.
More details about filing the problem in justice court can be found in Tex. Prop. Code Ann. § § 24.0051 24.0061.
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Evictions For No Lease / End Of Lease
In Texas, a landlord can end a tenancy at any time if there is no written lease in place or if the lease term has ended , regardless of whether rent has been paid on time. Often this type of eviction applies to tenants who are at the end of their lease and the landlord doesnt want to renew.
Once the tenancy ends, if the tenant remains on the property, the landlord can move forward with the eviction process.
To legally end a tenancy, the landlord must first give proper notice to move out. The amount of notice varies based on how often rent is paid.
- If the tenant had a verbal or written lease that has expired, the landlord must give 3 days notice.
- Less Than Month-to-Month If rent is paid less than month-to-month, a landlord must provide the tenant with the same amount of notice as one rental period for example, week-to-week tenants would receive at least seven days notice.
- Month-to-Month If rent is paid on a month-to-month basis , a landlord must give 30 days notice.
- More Than Once a Month If rent is paid more frequently than once a month, the tenancy shall end on the later of the day given in the notice or the day following the number of days equal to how often the tenant pays rent. For example, if a tenant pays the landlord every 20 days, the notice shall be a 20 Days Notice.