Eviction laws fluctuate between states, which is why it is important to ensure that you are familiar with the laws in your state. The eviction process must be followed carefully to prevent significant consequences. Both landlords and tenants have rights and eviction laws help to protect these rights. Simply changing the locks will get a landlord into a significant amount of legal trouble. When a tenant eviction occurs in VA, it is important to proceed according to the outlined process. 

Reasons to Evict

There are essentially two reasons that tenants may be evicted from a property before the end of their lease agreement. The first reason is a failure to pay rent. The second reason is a failure to comply with obligations that are outlined in the lease. If these conditions aren’t met, the landlord must wait until the end of the lease agreement before requiring the tenant to move out.  

Provide Notice

The required type of notice will depend on the reason for the eviction. If the tenant has ceased to pay rent, the landlord must give a 5-day notice to pay or vacate the premises. However, if the eviction reason is failure to comply with lease obligations, the landlord must deliver a “notice to quit” which is commonly known as a 30 day letter. This notice gives the tenant 21 days to correct the issue or 30 days to vacate. If illegal activity has been performed on the property, the landlord is not required to provide any notice prior to eviction. 

What Happens After Notice?

After notice has been given, the tenant will have the designated amount of time to correct the issue. If they don’t do so, they will be provided with a summons for unlawful detainer. The landlord must provide the proof of notice to the court. Depending on what happens after the summons, the matter may or may not go to court. If the landlord wins the trial, they will receive a writ of possession, which will allow them to begin the eviction process. After this, there are a few different ways to evict the tenant, but they will require scheduling a specific eviction date and communicating with the sheriff’s office about it. To learn more about the eviction process in VA, contact our experts at the Hampton Roads Keyrenter today!