Ohio state law protects both landlords and tenants under Ohio Revised Code 1923. If you choose to evict a tenant, therefore, you should make sure you comply with State Code, and with your local municipal code. Municipal codes do not conflict with state law, but they can add to them. For example, Cincinnati code allows for a "presumption of retaliation" in an eviction if certain conditions are met. If you want to evict a tenant for, for example, not paying rent, you must make sure you have not given the tenant a defensible reason for not paying.
There are certain reasons for evicting a tenant before the lease expires. These include:
- Not paying rent on time
- Violating lease terms and conditions.
- Violating state drug laws and other criminal offenses.
The Eviction Process
Landlords may not perform a forced eviction; they must deliver a notice of intent to evict, and then apply for a court order. You must be able to prove the notices have been received by the tenant. If the lease agreement has expired, or the tenant is on month-to-month, then a simple 30 Day notice to quit is you require.
Non-Payment of Rent
You must issue a 3 Day Notice, so the tenant has 3 days to come up to date. If they do not, you may issue an intention to evict.
Issue a notice demanding the action, or omission, is corrected within 30 days to avoid eviction.
Seek the advice of law enforcement or an attorney.
Issue the Notice
The notice must include all the usual identifiers - date, property address, tenant names, etc. And it must include the following:
"You are being asked to leave the premises, if you do not leave, an eviction action may be initiated against you. If you are in doubt regarding your legal rights and obligations as a tenant, it is recommended that you seek legal assistance.”
These words must be conspicuous in the notice. Then, file the Eviction Complaint with the Court. You may do this personally if you are the property owner, otherwise you should use an attorney.
- You must submit the complaint, plus the 3 Day or 30 Day Notice, and the filing fee.
- The court will serve the tenant with the summons, and arrange a hearing no earlier than 7 days from the summons.
- If the tenant does not appear, the court will decide in their absence.
- Both parties have the right to a jury trial.
- If the court finds in your favor, the tenant will have 10 days or less, depending on the particular court, to vacate.
- If the tenant does not move out, or does not remove all personal property, you must seek help from a bailiff or law enforcement officer to remove persons and property. Landlords pay for this service.
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