Though it seems a simple question, what is the process that must be utilized to evict a tenant in Nevada, the answer is far from simple. This is because the required process varies depending upon several factors associated with the tenancy. The most important factor is what grounds are being asserted as the basis for the eviction, for example nonpayment of rent or breach of the lease. The grounds for an eviction generally vary from circumstance to circumstance thus it is impossible to address each potential ground in this blog. For our purposes we will consider two circumstances. First an eviction based upon the nonpayment of rent and second generically grouping together all other circumstances. Nonetheless, it is important to recognize that various elements of the eviction process will change depending upon your specific circumstances and it is thus advisable to obtain legal advice specific to your situation.
Evictions based upon the nonpayment of rent are permitted to utilize a summary eviction proceeding. The summary proceeding potentially allows a landlord to evict a tenant without the necessity of a court hearing unless the tenant requests a hearing. The first step in the process is for the landlord to have served upon the tenant a notice to quit informing them that they have not paid rent and that they must vacate the premises within a statutorily dictated period of time. There are statutory requirements associated with the manner of service thus the landlord must ensure the service is properly completed and that the notice complies with the statutory elements. The notice further notifies the tenant that they have the right to file a document with the court requesting a hearing and that if they do so a hearing will be scheduled. If a hearing is requested the eviction process, or invalidity of the eviction process, will be determined by the court at that hearing. If no hearing is requested, at the expiration of the notice period, the landlord can file an affidavit with the court requesting an order authorizing the tenant to be evicted within twenty-four hours. The order, once obtained, must be served upon the tenant immediately in compliance with the statute and the court’s direction. At the expiration of the period allotted in the order the landlord may evict the tenant and change the locks. If the tenant it still on the premises then it is highly advisable to request the assistance of the sheriff’s office at the time the locks are changed and the tenant is escorted off the property.
Evictions for grounds other than the nonpayment of rent do not utilize the summary proceeding but instead require substantial additional steps. Generally speaking the process for an eviction on grounds other than the nonpayment of rent mirrors the basic litigation process. The landlord begins the process by preparing and filing a complaint for unlawful detainer with the court. The complaint and summons are then served upon the tenant who has the opportunity to answer and defend. Unless settled this process requires the parties to engage in a trial and all of the preliminary steps associated with a trial. Only after the trial is the eviction truly complete. Nonetheless, there is the option during this process for possession of the property to be temporarily transferred from the tenant to the landlord. This occurs if the landlord files a temporary writ of restitution and to satisfy the requirements for issuance of such a writ. If a temporary writ of restitution is issued the landlord will be permitted to recover possession of the premises. However it is important to note that such possession is temporary and permanent possession of the premises cannot be granted until the completion of the trial and entry of the judgment by the court.
Obviously there are numerous factors which effect the eviction process in Nevada, many more than are discussed herein. However, as a general rule, depending upon your circumstances, the basic process for any eviction will utilize one of the two procedural outlines discussed above.
Posted on February 6, 2015 by J. Mahe
Mahe Law, Ltd.
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Carson City, NV 89703
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