Do I need an attorney to evict a tenant? Well, the answer to that is no, you don’t if you know how to evict them. Usually, you evict tenants because they haven’t paid the rent, and that starts by the landlord giving the tenant a three-day notice. A three-day notice is spelled out in the Florida statutes, and it can only be for rent. So if you’re going to do the eviction yourself, you need to look up that notice and deliver it to the tenant and give them three days from the date that you deliver the notice. You don’t count the day you give it to them, and then you start counting the days. You can’t count Saturday or Sunday or a legal holiday, and after the three days have expired and they haven’t paid the rent or vacated, you’re then in a position to file a complaint for eviction, and that’s where you can try and find the law suit or complaint. I think there’s some forms out at the law library or whatever, and you can complete those and basically attach the notice to them saying that they haven’t paid the rent and that they owe you the money, and then you can file that in court.
And then after that, you then have to see if they file a response. If they do file some response, the judge will then usually set a hearing to determine the amount of rents owed, and you have to appear in court. Sometimes it just sits there and nothing happens, and that’s whenever you get frustrated or need to talk to a lawyer, or you go to a hearing and the judge doesn’t evict them and sends you on your way. So at that point, you probably do need a lawyer, and then we’ll have to look at your handy work to see whether or not – how good a lawyer you are.
So no, you don’t need a lawyer if you know what you’re doing. Some landlords who have multiple properties are a little pro at it and so that they’ve been doing it by themselves for some time, whereas if this is the first time that you’ve tried to evict a tenant, you probably need to go ahead and hire a lawyer and then copy what he does so that the next time you’ll be able to do it ’cause hopefully he’ll make it look easy for you.
So no, you don’t need a lawyer. But if you do need one, well, give me a call at 727-847-2288.