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An eviction action is a lawsuit filed by a landlord who is asking the court to determine if the tenant should be evicted or if they have a legal right to remain on the property. If you do not agree with the complaint, or if you do not believe that you should be evicted, or if you need more time to move, you must come to court.
REASONS FOR FILING FOR EVICTION:
- Non-payment of rent (most common)
- Not moving after receiving proper notice or after lease has expired
- Cancellation of a Contract for Deed
- Mortgage Foreclosure
- Lease Violation - including drug related
HOW DOES A LANDLORD FILE AN EVICTION COMPLAINT?
Who can file?
- Property owner; or
- Owner represented by an attorney who will file; or
- Owner represented by someone who will file; or
- Person entitled to possession of the property; or
- Owner represented by a designated agent with Power-of-Attorney who will file.
- Agents cannot conduct a jury trial or appeal in the Appellate or Supreme Court.
- File original complaint on floor C-3 of the Hennepin County Government Center.
- If a written lease is involved, attach a copy of it to the complaint.
- File one copy of the complaint for each defendant named and one additional copy.
- The filing fee is payable to the District Court Administrator.
COMPLIANCE WITH MINNESOTA STATUTE 504B.181 (LAW):
The law in MN Statute 504B.181 requires that a landlord inform the tenant in writing about the following information, and post the information in a noticeable place in the building:
- Name, address of the authorized manager of the building;
- Name, address of the owner of the building or the authorized agent who collects rent and is responsible for notices and demands;
- Statement of your compliance with this law on the complaint form.
The landlord must comply with the law or the eviction complaint may be dismissed unless you can prove that the tenant has known about the information for at least 30 days before you filed the complaint.
HOW DOES A LANDLORD COMPLETE THE COMPLAINT FORM?
- List the approximate date the tenant signed the lease or occupied the property.
- List the complete address of the property, including any identifying information.
- List the length and terms of the lease or if the lease is "month-to-month."
- Identify the owner of the property and the legal relationship to the person signing the complaint.
- Indicate that you have followed the law of Statute 504B.181.
- Give your reason(s) for wanting the tenant evicted.
A summons is a legal, written notice informing the defendant (tenant) that a court action has been started and that the claim will be heard on a specific day. It also states that if the defendant disagrees with the action or wants to tell a different side of the story, s/he must appear in court at that time.
After the complaint has been completed, the clerk prepares a summons and several copies. These copies are given to the person (plaintiff) filing the complaint.
- The plaintiff may not serve the summons.
- Service of the summons must be completed at least 7 days before the hearing date.
- A summons may not be served on legal holidays.
- An affidavit of service must be filed with the Court 3 working days before the court date.
SERVING THE SUMMONS:
- Personal Service: Another adult who is not a party to the case may hand the summons directly to the defendant at least seven days before the court date.
- Substitute Service: Another adult who is not a party to the case may deliver the summons by leaving a copy of the summons with another responsible person who lives with the defendant. This person is then responsible for delivering the summons to the defendant.
MAILING AND POSTING:
Posting is used as a form of service when the defendant(s) can not be found and if personal or substitute service has been attempted at least twice on different days with at least one of the attempts having been made between the hours of 6:00 p.m. and 10:00 p.m.
All of the following steps must be completed at least seven (7) days before the hearing:
- The plaintiff or plaintiff’s attorney mails a copy of the Summons and Complaint to the defendant’s last known address.
- Process server has made at least two (2) attempts at service at the premises. Attempts must be on different days, with one attempt between 6:00 p.m. and 10:00 p.m.
- Process server completes notarized Affidavit of Not Found.
- Plaintiff or plaintiff’s attorney completes notarized Affidavit of Plaintiff (states defendant can not be found)
- Plaintiff or plaintiff’s attorney at law who mailed the Summons completes notarized Affidavit of Mailing.
- The Affidavit of Not Found, Affidavit of Plaintiff, and the Affidavit of Mailing are filed with the Court
After these steps are completed and the Affidavits are filed, then:
- The Process Server posts the Summons and Complaint in an easy to notice place on the premises. This must occur at least seven (7) days prior to the hearing.
Process server completes a notarized Affidavit of Posting. This needs to be filed with the Court at least 3 working days before the hearing.
WHERE IS EVICTION COURT HELD?
Housing Court eviction hearing are held at the Hennepin County Government Center, Floor C-3, 300 South 6th Street, Minneapolis, MN. A hearing date is assigned at the time of filing the complaint, and the hearing is held within 14 days of the filing date.
REQUESTING AN INTERPRETER:
If you need interpreter services for the hearing, call the court right away (612-348-5186). The court generally needs 48 hours notice to provide an interpreter.
RECOVERY OF RENT:
Claims for rent and other monies that are less than $15,000.00 can be recovered through Conciliation Court. Claims over $15,000.00 must be filed in Civil Court.
EVICTION NOTICE (WRIT OF RECOVERY OF PREMISES AND ORDER TO VACATE):
A Writ of Recovery of Premises and Order to Vacate is a legal notice ordering the defendant to move from the location described in the complaint. It can be issued only after a landlord wins an eviction action.
The Writ can be pick up on floor C-3 of the Government Center and the Writ fee must be paid.
The sheriff's office must serve this notice. If the sheriff cannot serve the notice personally, they may post it in a noticeable place within the location described in the complaint.
The tenant has 24 hours to move from the premises. If the defendant disobeys the notice, contact the sheriff at (612)348-6759.
Read more about the law on recovering property through a Writ of Recovery in MN Statute s. 504B.365.
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