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How to deal with a tenant who refuses to pay rent

Facing a Florida tenant who refuses to pay rent can be a challenging situation. However, there are specific steps that landlords can take to address this issue effectively.

By understanding the proper procedures and taking decisive action, landlords can navigate the situation with confidence and ensure a fair resolution.

Serve a Notice to Pay Rent or Quit

The first step is to serve the tenant with a Notice to Pay Rent or Quit. This notice informs the tenant of their overdue rent and gives them a set period, typically three days, to pay it or vacate the premises.

File an eviction suit

If the tenant fails to pay rent or move out within the specified time frame, landlords can file an eviction suit with the county court. This legal action initiates the eviction process and requires the tenant to appear in court.

Attend the eviction hearing

Both the landlord and the tenant must attend the eviction hearing. During the hearing, the judge will review the case and make a ruling based on the evidence presented.

Obtain a Writ of Possession

If the judge rules in favor of the landlord, they will issue a Writ of Possession. This document authorizes the sheriff to remove the tenant from the rental property if they refuse to leave voluntarily.

Enforce the Writ of Possession

Once the landlord obtains the Writ of Possession, the sheriff will schedule a time to remove the tenant from the property. Landlords should cooperate with law enforcement to ensure a smooth eviction process.

By following these steps, landlords can navigate the challenges of unpaid rent to reach a fair and satisfactory resolution.

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