What’s the deal with evictions in South Dakota?
There may come a time when you need to evict a tenant from a rental location. Knowing the right way to proceed and the options available to you can make this process easier and reduce the time and financial burdens associated with resolving the problem.
If you do ever find yourself trying to work things out with a problem tenant, there’s a good chance that you’ll wish there was somebody who could help you. Not necessarily a lawyer, because the costs of legal consulting add up quickly. Maybe more like a mediator.
The good news for people in or near Sioux Falls, is that the city has instituted a new mediation program for landlords and tenants. The program was implemented in the spring of 2014, and by November, the office received more than 200 calls. Of those, only 14 proceeded to court. More often than not, the city reports, people just need help understanding the law.
It just goes to show that understanding your rights and responsibilities as a landlord can empower you with the ability to make decisions and proceed in the most effective manner when you have a dispute with a tenant.
And if you’re one of the few who still need to proceed to court with a tenant to evict them, it’s important to follow the process carefully. Read on to learn more.
What are some reasons I can evict a tenant?
- Unpaid rent
- Lease violations
- Unauthorized usage or criminal activity
Are there situations in which I cannot evict a tenant?
Tenants cannot be evicted for any discriminatory reasons.
What is the process normally like?
Landlords may want to try resolving things on their own first, as court can be expensive and frustrating. If you have tried this and feel you have no other option but to proceed with legal action, follow the steps below.
- Provide the tenant with a three day notice to quit/vacate by hand
- If the tenant is unavailable or missing six hours after the first attempt, use an alternative method such as first-class mail or putting the notice on the rental location door
- The tenant can avoid eviction legal action by vacating the premises, fixing the problem, or paying rent
- If the notice to quit expires, the landlord can file a summons and complaint in circuit court
- The tenant is then summoned by a process server about the upcoming hearing
- If the tenant doesn’t show up, the hearing defaults to a judgment in the landlord’s favor
- If the tenant does not vacate after the judge’s decision for the landlord, a sheriff or other officer can execute the eviction.
- Property worth more than $500 is put into storage at the landlord’s expense for up to 30 days.
Where can I learn more?
If you have any questions, or think you may want to start the eviction process with a tenant in South Dakota, please consult a lawyer.
- Nolo Guide to Illegal Eviction Procedures in South Dakota
- South Dakota Legislature Codified Laws on Evictions
- Minnehaha County Sheriff’s Office Eviction Procedures
- Mass.gov Eviction Laws
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