What to Know About Eviction Protection in Texas

What to Know About Eviction Protection in Texas

It's been an eventful few years in the rental market, from the expiration of the CARES Act moratorium to ongoing affordability challenges. And while no one likes to think about eviction, there may come a time when you need to know about the process and eviction protection in Texas.

You might need to evict a tenant for several reasons, such as non-payment of rent or because of a breach in the lease agreement. Here's what you need to know about the process.

Steps in the Eviction Process

Regardless of why you must evict a tenant, that person can fight the eviction in court. The process involves going to the Justice of the Peace court.

However, there are many steps that lead up to that point. You must understand them to fully comprehend eviction protection measures.

Notice to Vacate

First, tenants will receive a three-day notice to vacate. This timeframe may be longer or shorter depending on any agreed-upon terms in the lease agreement. This notice needs to be in writing and delivered in one of the following ways:

  • Personal delivery
  • Through certified, registered, or regular mail
  • Attached to the inside of the front entry door
  • Attached to the outside of the front door in a sealed envelope

If you attach the notice to the door, it must contain the tenant's name and the phrase "IMPORTANT DOCUMENT."

Additionally, a notice cannot be attached to the front door any later than 5 PM. Landlords must also send a copy in the mail.

You don't have to give a tenant the option to pay the late rent or fix the violation.

Eviction Citation

If the tenant hasn't moved out by the date in the eviction notice, landlords can file an eviction suit. The hearing date cannot be less than ten days or more than 21 days after the filing of the suit.

A court clerk then sends the eviction citation to the constable's office. A constable has two attempts to deliver the notice. After that point, they may slip it under a tenant's door or attach it to the front entry door and send a copy in the mail.

Trial and Going to Court

Tenants have a right to a jury trial. They may request a jury trial via written demand.

Both the tenant and the landlord must appear before the Justice of the Peace. The judge makes the final decision.

If it favors the landlord, tenants have five calendar days to either move out or appeal the decision. Landlords also have five days if the judge's decision favors the tenant.

A judge may rule in favor of a tenant if a landlord fails to follow the eviction process correctly, adhering to all Texas landlord-tenant laws. One mistake can cause you to lose the case. Eviction lawyers that represent tenants look for any missteps to sway the judge or jury's decision.

That's why it's crucial to understand eviction protection and have a full-service property management company on your side to handle issues such as tenant screening and evictions. Evictions are complicated, but we'll handle them from beginning to end.

Understanding Eviction Protection Laws

As you can see, the process of evicting a tenant is a complex one. Understanding eviction protection is only the first step. You need someone on your side that understands Texas law and thoroughly screens applicants to reduce the chances of needing to evict a renter in the first place.

We provide a variety of services for owners and investors that want to maximize their profits and make rental property management easier. Learn more about how we can help you with your Texas rental property.