WHAT IS A DISTRESS WRIT? It is basically a “writ” used to prevent a tenant from removing its property from the rental premises. It is issued by the Clerk of Court after the judge enters an order directing the issuance of the writ, and a bond being posted by the Landlord.
LANDLORD LIENS – under Florida law, a landlord has an automatic lien upon assets of the tenant brought onto the rental premises. The amount of the landlord lien is related to the rent owed.
WHEN IS A DISTRESS WRIT USED? Generally, when a tenant is behind in rent in a commercial rental property, the Landlord can seek the issuance of a distress writ to prevent the tenant from removing all of its assets from the rental property thus making it difficult for the landlord’s lien to attach to the tenant’s property. Once the distress writ is served on the tenant, the tenant can not take assets off of the rental property location. Then, Landlord can foreclosure upon its landlord lien rights and recover unpaid rent money owed.
WHY MUST THE LANDLORD POST A BOND BEFORE A DISTRESS WRIT IS ISSUED? The bond is required in order to protect the tenant in the event it is later determined by the judge that the Landlord is not entitled to a writ.
We at the Eviction Law Firm can protect the Landlord’s lien rights and seek the issuance of a distress writ and foreclose upon the landlord’s lien and collect money owed.
KEEPING TENANT SECURITY DEPOSITS
A security deposit is held by a landlord as security for the tenant’s complete performance under the lease. After the tenant vacates, the landlord should do a walk-through of the property with the then-former tenant present. Any damages to the property should be noted on a move-out form. Taking pictures of damages can also prove useful later. Then, the landlord can perform an accounting of damages caused to the property beyond reasonable wear and tear, unless the lease has other provisions regarding damages. And an accounting of any sums that should have been paid by the tenant but which remain outstanding should be performed.
The landlord then has limited time to properly serve documents upon the former tenant in order to keep the security deposit and apply it against money the former tenant owes for damages and rent or other money owed to the landlord. Proper procedures must be followed, or the landlord may forfeit the right to keep the security deposit.
See a sample Notice of Claim on Security Deposit. (a sample Notice of Claim on Security Deposit)
Hire Us to prepare Landlord’s Notice of Claim on Security Deposit.
USING TENANTS' PROPERTY AS SECURITY FOR RENT DUE
Commercial tenants place their personal property onto the leased premises. This includes things like inventory, equipment, and supplies. The landlord is, by law, granted a lien on the tenants’ personal property. The landlord can enforce this lien right by stopping tenants from removing their personal property from the rental premises. A Distress Writ is a legal mechanism to prevent tenants from taking their property out in a midnight rush to abandon the premises and try to not pay rent owed.
Our firm can seek issuance of Distress Writs for commercial landlords.
LANDLORDS HAVE AUTOMATIC LIENS ON TENANT PROPERTY
Florida law grants landlords in commercial properties the right to assert a statutory lien on all of the personal property the tenant brings onto the premises. The lease may also allow for a consent or contractual lien on tenant property. The landlord can take steps to enforce the lien, by retaining the property of the tenant and by foreclosure of the lien.
Hire Us to enforce a Landlord’s Lien rights!
LAWSUITS AGAINST LEASE GUARANTORS
A guarantor to a lease is a person or company that promises to pay money that the tenant fails to pay. Enforcement of lease guarantees involves compelling the guarantor to be notified of the tenants’ default, and a demand for payment. Otherwise, a lawsuit against the guarantor may be required. The defenses a guarantor can raise against the landlord’s lawsuit to enforce the guarantee are usually quite limited, making enforcement of the guarantee more likely to succeed. A transfer of the leased property could have an effect on the guarantee.
Hire Us to Enforce a Lease Guarantee!