As a landlord, evicting a problematic tenant is sometimes necessary to protect your rental property. If you have lawful grounds to initiate eviction in North Carolina, understanding and correctly following every step is critical. If you’re ready to take on the eviction process, the experienced team at Rountree Losee frequently advises landlord clients on legal evictions.
On What Grounds Can You Evict?
North Carolina law allows landlords to pursue formal eviction if a tenant:
- Consistently pays rent late or not at all
- Damages the unit or common areas
- Disregards the lease terms after written notice
- Engages in criminal acts on the property
- Violates other key state or local tenancy laws
Filing a Summary Ejectment Complaint
If a tenant continues to be non-compliant after a clear lease violation, you will need to provide an official written notice detailing the issue and allow ten days for them to resolve the issue or vacate the property. If there is no change in the situation after ten days, your next vital step is filing an ejectment complaint with the small claims court in the county where the unit is located. This initiates the formal eviction proceedings.
Once the complaint is legally served, the tenant must respond by filing an answer to the complaint and appearing for the summary ejectment hearing. Filing an answer is not always necessary in small claims court. You may request a default judgment granting you possession if they do neither.
Obtaining and Enforcing Your Writ
If the judge rules in your favor as a plaintiff, you will receive a writ of possession order. This is legal permission to take back control of your property; the local sheriff’s department will enforce it. Typically, the sheriff will work with the tenant to oversee the removal of any remaining belongings. The department can utilize county deputies and arrange for forced removal if necessary.
Creating a Solid Case
Some evictions grow complicated if tenants defend themselves, so it’s important that you thoroughly document any lease violations that occur in case legal action becomes necessary. Also, consider working with specialized landlord-tenant attorneys like the seasoned team at Rountree Losee for guidance in building your strongest complaint.
Contact Rountree Losee LLP Today
Reclaiming your property from a non-compliant tenant can be draining, but understanding the process, documenting properly, and partnering with the right legal counsel makes a huge difference in the outcome of the case. Contact our office for a consultation by visiting our website or calling (910) 763-3404.