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CalAttorney2, Attorney
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Satisfied Customers: 10244
Experience:  I am a civil litigation attorney with experience representing both landlords and tenants in residential and commercial property disputes.
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FLORIDA REAL ESTATE - MOBILE HOME. My friend owns a mobile

Customer Question

FLORIDA REAL ESTATE - MOBILE HOME. My friend owns a mobile home in a large park. They filed a complaint against her and now they have served a 20 day notice to evict - I believe there are two more notices to evict like 5 days notice and then 24 hours???? She has been paying her lot rent but, unfortunately, she has caused her own problems here. Property is owned by ELS Company. 1. is the eviction notice timing correct above? 2. Can she scrap the property and get money from an aluminum dealer? 3. It is currently on the market to sell which is why she will continue paying lot rent for at least 2 months after she has to be out of here. 3. Will the property technically be her property if she pays the rent even though she has been evicted therefore keeping it up for sale for as long as possible or will they just take it from her? She desperately needs the money from the sale.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Expert:  CalAttorney2 replied 2 years ago.
Yes, the timing is correct.Your friend should contact the mobile home park management directly and see if they can come to a formal (written resolution) permitting her to leave the unit there until she can sell the home.Short of that, she will be forced to either remove her home, or the park will have it towed and she will be forced to pay for storage.If she cannot reach a resolution with the park through direct negotiations (I fear this bridge may have been burned given the circumstances you have noted), I would recommend that she try using mediation. She can contact your local bar association and request referrals to mediators, a third party neutral can often help you reach a mutually agreeable resolution. Use the bar association's referrals to contact a mediator or two, the mediator will then contact the other party to set up a mediation session, and you can go from there - hopefully resulting in a formal or written settlement agreement, and save yourself the time and expense of litigation.If she does speak with the park directly, it is very important to document her phone conversations (failure to do so leads to confusion and disputes over what was agreed upon). Use "confirmation letters" to do this. Confirmation letters: Keep written records of all communications - so if you speak to someone by phone, promptly send a follow up "confirmation letter" summarizing your conversation, who you spoke to, when, and any agreements you reached. Keep copies of your outgoing correspondence, as well as anything that you receive.For a good overview of the eviction process (just so your friend has an idea of what the process is like) see this summary - it is written for tenants living in apartments and homes, but the process for those living in mobile homes is nearly identical except that the final forcible detainer involves the removal and storage of the unit at the expense of the tenant).Terminating a tenancy-1) Notice: The first step in any termination is giving notice, the landlord can simply give notice that they no longer want the tenant to live there (this is usually 30 days, or 60 days, and it can be done for no reason whatsoever, there is no fault, and while the tenant must relocate, they are not being "evicted" and there is no blemish on their rental history), they can give a "notice to pay or quit" (usually 3 day or 5 day depending on the state, and the tenant has this amount of time to pay rent that they missed or move out), "notice to "cure or quit" (the tenant has breached the lease - broken something, noisy, etc. and must stop it or fix it within the notice period, again 3 days, 5 days, or 10 days), or a "notice to quit" (this is a 3 day or 5 day notice that says the tenant has messed up so badly they can do nothing but move out within the notice period - there is no chance to "cure" - this often happens when there is illegal activity on the property). 2) Unlawful detainer/forcible entry and detainer (this is the legal proceeding where the landlord goes to court and sues the tenant to get possession - the tenant has an opportunity to appear and defend the action, common defenses include improper notice, breach of the lease (such as failure to maintain the property - "inhabitable conditions"). If the tenant answers the complaint, the parties can take "discovery" from one another and get additional information before a court trial before a judge. 3) A judgment of possession/writ of eviction - if the landlord wins the trial, they get a judgment of possession and the court will issue a "writ of eviction." 4) Forcible eviction - this happens when the Sheriff or Constable serves the writ of eviction - some jurisdictions give a courtesy notice the day or two before the eviction, others do not, but the end result is the sheriff overseeing the landlord's movers removing all of the tenant's possessions from the property and placing them on the curb, and the tenants are forcibly removed from the property. At that point, the landlord can change the locks and the tenant can no longer return (They have been "evicted").
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

I went to the courthouse yesterday and the clerk told me "the case is still up with the judge" surely they cannot evict her without a response to her defense roughly put together answer. Looks like to me that the judge has not responded as she has not received any correspondence.

I have begged the manager to get hold of the area manager in Tampa she replied "too late it is in eviction". This woman does not care that this lady is not well. I have tried and tried but this is municipal court (I used to be a paralegal for Latham) how long can a muni judge take - we are not talking about the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals here!!

Expert:  CalAttorney2 replied 2 years ago.
If her answer was filed on time - she should have a hearing date scheduled.If the hearing date has already passed, the muni judge should have rendered a decision within a relatively short time (each county or municipality (or even individual judges within the same county) have slightly different turn around times, but I haven't seen a residential eviction ruling take longer than about 2-3 weeks, and that was very unusual, most are made from the bench).
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

She has not been given a hearing date (I am wondering if the clerk is wrong and ELS (plaintiff) got the hearing date and Wendy did not (or that is what she told me). I think I will call the court again tomorrow and ask them again. She paid a lot of money for this home and I want her to be able to stay (unfortunately not no matter how much I beg the office) until she sells the home or moves out but lets the property stay on the market. Can she move out, as they requested, and let the property stay on the market for maybe 2 or 3 months if they are getting the lot rent? I mean they should be happy that she is out.

Expert:  CalAttorney2 replied 2 years ago.
That is kind of what I had in mind as a negotiated or mediated solution.If you have the law firm that is representing the park you can try contacting them on behalf of your friend and seeing if this would be a potential resolution. (A lot of time with these types of cases, once the matter goes to litigation the law firm is the best point of contact to negotiate as opposed to the management office).
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

What about scrapping the property for aluminum? I have done all I can to help her and I cannot talk to ELS or the manager again or I could run into a problem!!

Customer: replied 2 years ago.

What about scrapping the property for aluminum? I have done all I can to help her and I cannot talk to ELS or the manager again or I could run into a problem!!

Expert:  CalAttorney2 replied 2 years ago.
Yes she can sell it for scrap - she can contact a metal recycling place.(She can also contact a mobile home reseller, she may get a better price, unfortunately either way she is kind of getting the "fire sale" price for her home).If at all possible, I really would encourage her to try mediation for a last ditch effort, your suggestion of vacating while she is selling is exactly what I had in mind as a good "mutually agreeable resolution" to propose that would both get her out of the park and allow her time to sell her house on the open market with at least a little bit of time.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Thank you so very much - I will try to get them to let her leave, pay the rent and sell the property or will tell her about your scrapping answer. Shalom

Expert:  CalAttorney2 replied 2 years ago.
You are welcome, and I do wish you both the best with this matter.Thank you for using our forum, and please do not forget to rate my service so that I can receive credit for assisting you.Thank you again, and again I wish you the best.Bill

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