What are your rights and rules if you get an eviction notice?

February 6, 2014

The reason aside, an eviction notice sometimes requires the services of a lawyer. If you are ever handed one, what are your rights and the rules you must follow?
A landlord cannot repossess a rental property without just cause. Under a lease, a tenant has the right to inhabit a housing unit for however long he or she wants, as long rent is paid every month and meets the terms of the lease.

However, some situations may give the owner the right to repossess his property. That includes if he or she wishes to:

  • Reclaim the space to live in it him- or herself.
  • House his or her children or parents in the unit.
  • House a family member or an in-law (sister-in-law, mother-in-law, son-in-law), for whom the owner is the main source of financial support.
  • House an ex-spouse, for whom the owner remains the main source of financial support.
What are your rights and rules if you get an eviction notice?

What procedure must the owner follow?

The owner must submit a written eviction notice, which informs the tenant of his intention to repossess the dwelling. The date of repossession, which would normally occur at the end of the lease, must be mentioned in the notice. The full name of the person or persons who will live in the dwelling must also be stated, as well as their relationship to the owner.

What are the rules?

The owner must give six months' notice to the tenant, unless the lease is shorter than six months. The tenant must respond within one month of receipt of the eviction notice or it will be understood that the tenant is refusing to vacate the rental unit.

What happens if the tenant does not respond?

The owner may apply to the court in the case of refusal. A lawyer specializing in eviction notices will be able to help in providing evidence demonstrating that the owner is repossessing the housing legitimately. In other words, they must demonstrate that the eviction is not a pretext for ulterior motives. In this case, the future tenants will have to testify at the hearing. The court may require the landlord to compensate the tenant’s moving costs.

What happens if the owner is lying?

If, after moving out, the former tenant realizes that neither the owner nor a member of his family is occupying the unit, the tenant may have recourse in the eyes of the law. The tenant must make a case with his lawyer to prove that the owner lied. The court will ask for solid evidence, such as a rental ad in a newspaper or the testimony of neighbours. The former tenant may receive damages, plus interest, for inconvenience suffered.

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