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Old 04-19-2011, 02:32 PM
41 posts, read 115,316 times
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What percentage of people file their own evictions vs hire a attorney to do it, and what is a good rate? Include which state because the laws vary. Plus how many a month do you file?
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Old 04-19-2011, 05:03 PM
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Lots of questions...

IMO any one who has no clue should hire a lawyer because one mistake can cause the entire process to be done all over and again you have to pay the filing fees.

If you are a little shabby then you easily can do it....In Florida the process and what you need is spelled out on the Public records.
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Old 04-19-2011, 08:32 PM
Location: Seaford, Delaware
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In Texas it's cheaper easier and faster to do it yourself. I haven't filed many. The evictions I have filed I managed to get them done in less than 30 days. I followed the Landlord/Tenant rules and filed with the JP after posting a 3 day notice. Filed with the JP on day 3, court was two weeks later, they were given 5 days to get out. Over and done with. I don't remeber the fees, the cost of filing was about $90.00.
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Old 04-20-2011, 02:13 AM
Location: In a state of mind
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They say something about a fool being their own lawyer. I prefer to let lawyers do the lawyer stuff and I do real estate.

HOWEVER... You can DIY if you understand the rules. Best is to hire an attorney the first time. I help other LL's but because I screen my tenants on the rack and then tear their fingernails out with pliares I actually have not had to evict anyone in court in years. I also tend to use other methods of persuasion, like having a couple of really big ugly guys with me who will help them move into a motel which I will pay for, right now start packing. Most anything is cheaper than an eviction.

I often do the paperwork myself to ensure it is done rapidly. Many attorneys batch file cases then send everything out for process service which can add several days. I can be in and out and serve the papers before 10 am sometimes and surprise the tenant before they think they need to start dodging service.

If you do have to do an actual eviction you want to double check your dates, watch out for holidays and weekends. Most places a 3 day is served on the morning of the 2nd. Then you file for eviction on the morning of the 4th day after (6th). So if you serve on a Monday then you can file a case on Friday morning. But if you serve on a Friday you can't file until the next Thursday.

Once you file you have to serve the summons and complaint on the tenant, usually in person. This can be tricky if they know you are coming. The trick is to do it before they think they have to worry. I am the first person in line to file the case and I try to wait outside their door until they come out to go to work or buy beer in the morning. Surprise! They think they have a few extra days and now they realize they are in deep doo-doo.

I once again offer to relocate them and help them help me to help them by not having to ruin their life and credit with a judgment collection.

Usually they move before court. Go anyway and get a default judgment. A few pros will file an answer - but they usually have to deposit the rent to do this.

IF you have to go to court it is often well worth hiring an attorney at that point to appear, they often know things us lay people don't (like the Judge). After court you will (we hope) get a writ of possession and depending on the state a judgment for your loss. You give the writ to the marshall or whoever does set outs. These folks will often jerk you around and delay unnecessarily. I have never seen a lock out happen on the earliest date. The tenants usually get several more free days and the Marshall don't freaking care. You also record the judgment at the recorders office.

Eventually in a week or so the marshall will get around to locking them out or you will have like 30 minutes to move everything to the curb, so have a crew ready.

Now you can go clean up the mess and do it all again.
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Old 04-20-2011, 05:36 AM
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I have never hired a lawyer to evict a tenant. I have done it myself all the time and actually won every single case.
Bring as much paperwork as you possiblly can ; the more, the better. Make sure you have all your ducks in a row.

Here in our part of NY, it takes about 3 months for the sherrif. So it was easier and quicker to give the deadbeat tenant a few hundred dollars to get out. It costs $1500 cash for the sherrif and of course the three months that she is still there without paying rent.
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Old 04-20-2011, 01:49 PM
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We actually offer a eviction and collection management system for landlords. Its free but you just pay the attorney his fees. Thats why I am looking for referrals of good priced attorneys for the clients for our system. Note: not try to advertise here just looking for referrals
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