landlord rights and eviction of tenants from leased property

Can a Landlord Evict a Tenant for Late Rent?

In Pennsylvania, it's a landlord's right to file an order for possession in Magisterial District Court if a tenant fails to make timely rental payments.

Once a landlord receives an eviction judgment from the court, and no appeal is filed, the landlord has the right to request an order for possession of the property from the Court. An order for possession gives a sheriff or constable the right to evict a tenant from the leased property. However, a landlord may be faced with a tenant who wants to make payment of the judgment before the eviction.

Tenants in Pennsylvania have the right to pay and stay under the Landlord Tenant Act.  68 P.S. § 250.503(c).  This means that a tenant can make payment up to the actual time of the eviction and remain in the property.  The landlord would not be permitted to proceed with an eviction. But what amount must the tenant pay? And what amount must a tenant pay if additional rent came due after the date of the judgment?

What amount does the tenant have to pay to stay in the property?

The Landlord Tenant Act requires a tenant to pay “rent actually in arrears and the costs.”  68 P.S. § 250.503(c). This means that the tenant must pay the judgment amount plus the landlord’s costs in obtaining a court order for possession.

How much does the tenant pay if additional rent was due after the date of the court judgment?

In a situation when additional rent comes due after the judgment, a landlord may think that the tenant would also have to pay such additional amounts to remain in the property.  However, this is not correct. A tenant is required to only pay the amount of the judgment plus costs, even if additional rent comes due after the judgment and before the eviction.  Therefore, a landlord may be faced with a situation in which a tenant pays the outstanding judgment, but is still delinquent in rent.  The landlord must then proceed from the beginning with another lawsuit in Magisterial District Court to obtain a judgment and order for possession.

High Swartz LLP real estate attorneys continue a long tradition of handling all aspects of real estate transactions. This work includes the protection of the interests of landowners, buyers and sellers of land, municipalities and developers. This work is a vital area of the firm’s practice, which is situated in the dynamic Greater Philadelphia handling real estate transactions in Montgomery County, Bucks County, Chester County, Delaware County and Philadelphia.

If you have any questions about Real Estate law, please contact Kevin Cornish at 610-275-0700 or Our attorneys in Bucks County and Montgomery County are here to assist you.

The information above is general: we recommend that you consult an attorney regarding your specific circumstances.  The content of this information is not meant to be considered as legal advice or a substitute for legal representation.

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