This guide, written for landlords, provides instructions on how to evict a tenant in Los Angeles county in 10 steps.
Since each Los Angeles eviction case is different, landlords would be wise to consult with legal counsel before initiating an eviction case against a tenant. Briefly, here are the steps to evict a tenant in Los Angeles:
- Draft a valid notice of termination. This could be a 3 day notice, 30 day, 60 day, 90 day, or a different type of notice, depending on the reason for the termination of tenancy.
- Landlords must then serve the notice of termination on the Los Angeles county tenant. While no law currently prohibits the landlord from serving his or her notice, this is not recommended and the notice should be served by a process server or the sheriff.
- Wait the required number of days specified in the notice of termination, and see if the tenant complies. For example, if the landlord served a 3 day notice to pay rent or quit, determine whether or not the tenant paid the rent or moved out within 3 days.
- If the tenant complied with the notice, then there is nothing left for the landlord to do. But if the tenant did not comply with the notice, additional steps must then be taken to evict the Los Angeles county tenant.
- Draft the eviction complaint and other required documents and file your unlawful detainer (“eviction”) case at the correct court location.
- Have the unlawful detainer served on the tenant, preferably by a process server. Note: the plaintiff cannot serve the unlawful detainer on the tenant.
- Wait the required number of days to see if the tenant files any response with the court.
- If the tenant does not file any response, request a default judgment. If the tenant files a response, the landlord will need to take appropriate action. For example, if the tenant filed an answer, the landlord may want to request a trial.
- When the landlord wins the case, either by default of after a trial, and receives a judgment for possession of the property, the landlord can then begin the writ of possession and sheriff lockout process to enforce the judgment.
- The landlord will meet the sheriff at the property at the date specified by the sheriff and this will be the date when legal possession returns to the landlord!
The unlawful detainer process in Los Angeles county can be extremely convoluted and difficult. Hopefully this step-by-step guide has been helpful for Los Angeles landlords. We represent landlords only, so please reach out to us when you are ready to begin an eviction of your Los Angeles county tenant.