Remedies for a landlord if the tenant refuses to leave after an eviction notice

Remedies-for-a-landlord-if-the-tenant-refuses-to-leave-after-an-eviction-notice

There has always been a huge amount of skepticism around the landlord-tenant equation in our country. Legally, the landlord-tenant relationship is governed by Rent laws which differ from State to State. 

In case of any problem, the law permits eviction of the tenant on specific grounds-illegal measures to evict the tenant should be avoided. 

In reality, it is challenging to deal with a tenant who refuses to leave even after being served an eviction notice.

The landlord may opt for having a conversation with the tenant. It helps to understand what is preventing him from leaving the premises. It is always better to have a word and work out a solution. 

Read more: Investment in Indian Property – As an NRI investor know your facts

Eviction Notice:

If dialogue does not help, a legal notice is sent. Sending an eviction notice is the first step to initiate the process of ejectment. It is a legal notice vide which the landlord informs the tenant the reasons for seeking his removal from the rented accommodation. 

A notice period of a reasonable number of days is given to vacate the premises.

The requirement of sending a notice to the tenant depends upon the applicable rent laws. A landlord must be conversant with the rule and regulations of the tenancy as prevalent in the area. 

Once the notice is served, the tenant may do what the landlord demands. 

Read more: The necessity of Legal Due Diligence in India

What if tenant refuses to go even after eviction notice?

Legal battles are often time consuming and expensive. However, sometimes there is no option left.

If the eviction notice is served, the tenant may refuse to leave. The landlord then files a suit in the court for ejectment of the tenant. It is advised to take help of professionals/law firms to draft and file the petition. A lawsuit is filed in the appropriate court within whose jurisdiction falls the rented property.

There are various grounds available to a landlord for evicting the tenant, like:

  • Violation of terms of the agreement by the tenant
  • Personal Necessity of the landlord – the property is needed for personal use
  • Non-payment of rent
  • Premises has become unsafe for human habitation and needs repair
  • Property is needed for renovation or alteration

The petition is filed after expiry of the said notice period, stating:

  • The terms of the rent agreement/lease deed between the tenant and the landlord
  • The violation made by the tenant – unauthorized use, subletting, non-payment of rent etc.
  • The period of non-payment of rent and the amount due

The landlord has to explain the violation of the lease deed. If there is no rent/lease deed, it becomes difficult for the landlord to make his point.

The copy of the eviction notice served upon the tenant is annexed with the petition.

It is pertinent to mention here that sometimes the landlord forgoes pending rent in case of eviction suits as he is more interested in getting back the possession of the property.

Read more: Selling a Property through a General Power of Attorney – Is it even valid?

Hearing in court:

The court fixes a date for the hearing. The parties are heard, and the order is pronounced. 

If the landlord wins the arguments, the court orders the tenant to hand over the possession of the property to him. The court grants time to the tenant to vacate the property.

If the tenant still fails to do so, the judicial order gets executed by filing an execution petition. The court appoints a Court Officer for removing the tenant. The Police may also intervene in case of recalcitrant tenants. 

Read more: How to save title of your property from illegal occupants?

Petition for Eviction of the Property

Petition for Eviction of the Property

Landlord-Tenant disputes, in particular eviction issues are some of the more common cases that we get to deal with.

In the recent past our eviction lawyers have come across some cases that bring to notice the fact that there is more awareness needed about this particular aspect.

Take the following cases for example:

Bhupinder Singh Bawa vs Asha Devi Case

  • Landlady filed a petition to evict the tenant as the property was required for business purposes by her son
  • Tenant appealed in the court that the son was already involved in family business and could start the work at some other location along with his father.
  • The court while dismissing the renter’s appeal said that the landlady has all the rights to use the premises for setting up her son’s business.
  • Further it was said that the tenant’s appeal was not suitable as there is no such law that would ask the landlady’s husband to modify his business to accommodate their son’s work and that too when the rented property is located in much more suitable area for the new business.

Gaya Prasad vs. Pradeep Srivastava case:

  • The court held that the date of filing of application for eviction is important to decide the bona fide requirements of the landlord.
  • In this case, the landowner started the eviction process to set up a clinic for his son.
  • The proceeding continued for a long time during which the son got associated with the Provincial Medical Service and the location of his posting was changed regularly.
  • The court here gave the ruling in the favour of eviction stating that the son joining the job was not important here.
  • The date of filing of petition was the crucial date to determine the need of eviction of the property.

In the context of various issues that keep coming up in these tenant eviction cases, it is vital to understand the following terms/requirements:

What do you mean by bona fide requirement of the landlord?

The bone fide requirement of the landlord refers to the condition where landowner needs the premises/property for self or family use.

Can a landlord evict tenants for bona fide requirement of property?

Yes, the landlord can evict or file a petition for eviction of the tenant on the basis of bona fide need of the asset.

Which date is considered crucial to decide the bona fide requirement of the landlord in case of property eviction proceedings?

The date of filing of petition for eviction is considered crucial for determining the legit requirement of the landlord for eviction proceedings.

Does the demise of the petitioner affect the proceedings of a case filed for eviction of the tenant?

No, the death of the applicant doesn’t affect the proceedings as the heirs of the deceased are permitted to defend their case citing the bona fide requirement of the property as mentioned in the petition.

Is it compulsory for all the owners of an estate to be present to file the petition for eviction of the renter?

One of the co-owners can alone file the application for eviction if all the other co-owners do not object. As per rules each and every co-owner has ownership rights over each and every part of the property. Therefore, it cannot be said that any co-owner is a partial owner.