The New York Courts reported almost 200,000 evictions in the state in 2022. The state has a distinct process for removing tenants that a landlord must understand and follow exactly to avoid any legal issues.
By following the law, landlords ensure the process is fair to both parties and also safeguard their interests and rights.
The eviction process begins with the issuance of a written notice. If the issue is nonpayment of rent, the landlord may give notice once payment is five days late. For other reasons, such as breaking a term in the lease, there is no waiting period. The notice gives the tenant a chance to correct the issue or move out.
If the tenant fails to comply with the notice, the landlord can proceed with filing a lawsuit in court. This involves submitting a “Petition” outlining the grounds for eviction. The tenant may request an adjournment, which delays the case for up to 14 days. It is essential for each party to show up on the court date.
During the court hearing, the tenant has the option to reach a settlement agreement, which would effectively conclude the legal proceedings. However, if the tenant is absent from the hearing, the judge will grant a default judgment in favor of the landlord. Conversely, if the tenant opposes the claims made by the landlord, the situation progresses to a trial where both parties present their arguments and evidence before the court.
After settling or receiving a judgment in favor, the landlord can then get a warrant to remove the tenant from the property. Law enforcement must do the actual eviction of the tenant. If at any time in a nonpayment case the tenant pays the past-due rent, the eviction process stops.
As landlords navigate the eviction process within New York State, they must approach each step with diligence and respect for the rights of the tenants. By following the guidelines, landlords can maintain an amicable tenant-landlord relationship even in challenging circumstances, ensuring that the process is lawful while also being empathic and professional.