“How Long Does an Eviction Take?” and Other Important Questions

Rhino Neal /Flickr

Rhino Neal/Flickr

The Rad Firm, APC prides itself on staffing capable attorneys who can tackle the most abstract question but there are a few questions that plague just about every caller’s mind: 

1)   How long does an eviction take?

Multiple months without rent payments?  LAHD complaints?  Jury trials?!  Evictions can be a financial nightmare for a landlord.  As a landlord myself, I understand the stress a troublesome tenant can bring and just how important it is to get them out before they severely impact one’s bottom line.  

That said, most evictions take approximately six weeks from start to completion.  Factors to take into consideration include: 

·      Whether the tenant is represented by an attorney

·      Whether the tenant files motions

·      Whether a jury trial is requested

·      Where your case will be heard

2)   Where will my case be heard? 

In mid-2013, eviction cases were consolidated to four courts throughout Los Angeles County: Stanley Mosk Courthouse (Downtown Los Angeles), Santa Monica Courthouse, Governor George Deukmejian Courthouse (Long Beach) and Pasadena Courthouse.  This means that all of the eviction cases in L.A. County are now heard in only four courts.  

You can use the “Filing Court Locator” search tool on www.lacourt.org to see where your case will be heard.  Simply enter in the zip code of your property and the site will direct you to the proper court.

3)   What should be my first move?

Your first move, even before contacting an attorney, should be to shore up any Los Angeles Housing Department or Los Angeles Building and Safety complaints levied on the property.  If you have not yet scheduled repairs, schedule them before talking to an attorney.  Any unmade repairs can be hazardous or even fatal to your eviction case.

4)   What does “uncontested” mean?

Uncontested means that the tenant has not answered the lawsuit within the requisite amount of time provided under the law.  For instance, if the tenant is served with the complaint by personal service, the law allows them five days to answer the lawsuit.  If the tenant does not answer the lawsuit or file a motion within those five days, then the matter is uncontested and you can request a default judgment from the court.

Feel free contact us at The Rad Firm, APC with any of your landlord/tenant related questions or comment on this post to see your question appear in the blog.