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Tenant signed 3yr lease Dec. 2011. Paid for 3 months, hasn't paid since (not working, no money). Need options.

Upper Darby, PA |

Bought the property specifically for this tenant (adult child) who needed a place for her family but has bad credit & couldn't find a place. She signed 3 yr lease, paid a lease deposit (which included $ for a fence for the yard to be installed at her request). Hasn't paid since 3/2012. I made it clear when we started that I needed her to pay rent as my own income isn't enough to cover my bills plus the mortgage for the rental home - she was supposed to improve her credit & then either buy the place OR move & I would sell it. She now says she is emotionally disabled & that it is illegal to evict her, plus she has a newborn baby. Can I try to sell the property? I don't want to ruin my credit by letting this go into foreclosure, but I can't afford to keep paying the mortgage w/ no rent.

Attorney Answers 2


I'm not aware of any emotional disability as serving as a defense to an eviction. You should consult with a local attorney for review of all the documents. If you like, feel free to call me at 610-446-0690.

This answer is for informational purposes only and does not in anyway constitute and/or form an attorney-client relationship.

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It's always sad when adult children take advantage of their parents and attempt to use the law against them. Fortunately for you, there is nothing stopping you from evicting her under these circumstances, provided that you follow the proper procedures.

The Landlord-Tenant Law of 1951 requires Four Steps to accomplish eviction: 1) Notice, 2) Complaint, 3) a Hearing, and 4) an Order for Possession.

First, you must give the Tenant adequate and proper WRITTEN notice. The Notice should be a demand letter stating the reason for eviction (failure to pay rent as agreed under the signed lease - aka breach of lease agreement), and it should state the date by which the tenant is required to vacate the home or face legal action (90 days for leases of more than 1 year). This written notice must be personally delivered to the tenant or posted on the house where it will be seen by the tenant.

Second, if the tenant does not leave by that time, the Landlord can file a Complaint for Possession (Eviction) with the Court to remove the Tenant. It is important that the Landlord not take any self-help action to evict the Tenant, since doing so could be a violation of the law. They only way to safely get them out is the get a Court Order. The Complaint needs to be served on the Tenant and Proof of Service Provided to the Court.

Next, at the Hearing scheduled at the time you filed the Complaint, you need to present the lease, the demand letter, and show that all the procedures were followed, and request that the Tenant be ordered evicted for violating the Lease. The Judge will hear all arguments, but generally, it will rule in favor of the landlord where the case involves a failure to pay and a breach of the Lease.

Lastly, with an Order in hand, the Landlord will need to present the Order to the Sheriff and request the Sheriff to execute the eviction and escort the tenant off the premises.

You can do all this without an attorney, but I would recommend at least consulting with one first to make sure you have all your options on the table and your ducks in a row.

I'm sorry you are facing this problem, and maybe you can reach an understanding with this girl before she and her baby are forcibly removed.

Good Luck!

Attorney answers to questions are for general purposes only and do not establish an attorney-client relationship. This answer is meant for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice within the bounds of a professional relationship. It is always best to seek counsel with a competent attorney experienced in your area of issue and fully informed about the facts of your case.

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