Non-Paying Tenant

The tenant stopped paying now what?

When a landlord is faced with the issue of a non-paying tenant unless the tenant voluntarily moves out and gives possession back to the landlord the landlord will most likely need to file a lawsuit for eviction against the tenant to remove the tenant and get possession back.

Not only is the landlord dealing with the financial stress from the loss of rental income but now the landlord must figure out the legal eviction process.

Many landlords chose to file the eviction Pro Se that is they represent themselves.  The Florida Supreme Court has provided self-help forms.

The Pinellas County Clerk of Court also provides a self-help center.

Check with Clerk of Court in your county as they may offer self-help forms as well in getting the process started.

It is always prudent that the landlord understands the Landlord Tenant Act before proceeding in the eviction process.

The first and most critical step in the eviction process is the Three (3) Day Notice.  The notice informs the tenant that they are delinquent in their rent and also demands that the rent be paid within 3 days after receiving the notice (not including weekends or legal holidays).

What happens if the tenant does not pay the rent within the 3 days?   Failure to pay the rent within the 3 day window will give the landlord the legal right to proceed forward with filing the eviction suit against the tenant.

As mentioned before the 3 day notice is absolutely critical because the notice provides and affords the tenant the ability to cure the default prior to the landlord moving forward with an eviction.  In my experience most landlords would rather the tenant pay within the 3 days then file an eviction.

When filling out the 3 day notice the landlord must be careful to properly fill in all the required information in the notice.    The notice will be attached to the actual eviction complaint so any error in the notice can delay the legal process or possibly cause the case to be dismissed.