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The only way for a tenant to be evicted is through the court process. A landlord does not have the right to discard your possessions or illegal lock you out without first taking you to court.
The first step in the process is notification. Your landlord must notify you in writing of any breach in your lease.
If you have a court hearing, it is essential that you appear in court. If you do not appear in court, your landlord will automatically be granted possession of your residence.
Starting July 1, 2021, all landlords must provide tenants with a Statement of Tenant Right and Responsibilities developed by the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development and posted on its website (dhcd.virginia.gov/landlord-tenant-resources) pursuant to Section §36-139 Code of Virginia
Currently, the CDC has extended the Eviction Moratorium until October 3, 2021, for those areas with a high risk of transmission. However, the eviction moratorium is only in regard to individuals and families who are unable to pay rent due to COVID-19 related reasons. Landlords can still move forward with filing evictions if a tenant has committed non-remediable lease violations. If you are unable to pay your rent and live in a high COVID-19 transmission rate, please download the CDC Eviction Moratorium Declaration form and submit it to your landlord or property management company right away. Landlords can also issue notices of non-renewal before your lease is set to expire. The timeframe for non-renewal notification is contingent upon your lease. However, your landlord cannot arbitrarily “kick” you out without going through the legal process.
It is against the law for your landlord to illegally lock you out of your home, turn off vital utility services, or deny or restrict access to services on the premises such as the pool, workout room, laundry room, etc. If your landlord conducts any of these “self-help eviction” practices, please go to the General District Court (1250 St. Paul’s Blvd, Norfolk, VA) and file the following petition at the clerk’s office: Tenant's remedies for exclusion from dwelling unit, interruption of services, or actions taken to make premises unsafe VA Code 55.1-1243.1. The tenant must have the name and the physical address, not a P.O. Box or Route Number, of the landlord or property manager for a warrant to appear in court is served upon the offending party. This petition is usually placed on the court docket within five (5) days.
Yes! Renters should always communicate with their landlord or property management company if they are faced with the inability to pay rent. Landlords and property management companies that own more than four (4) rental properties cannot move forward with an eviction without offering up to 6 months for a repayment plan. Also, while the CDC Eviction Moratorium is still in effect, download the CDC Eviction Moratorium Declaration Form and submit it to your landlord or property manager without delay. For complete details of your protections and responsibilities of you and your landlord, visit the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development at www.dhcd.virginia.gov.
Residents who are experiencing financial and/ or employment hardships may contact community resources for free budget and financial counseling such as BankOn Hampton Roads via email email@example.com or 757.943.9652; Norfolk Works Program at 757.763.6064 for employment and job readiness opportunities; Rent Ready Norfolk Renting Smart Academy to enroll in Renters Education Classes via email Rentready@norfolk.gov or 757.664.RENT(7368); or Resources757.Org to receive assistance for additional services.