According to Article 31 of the Indiana state code, property owners and renters can enter into an "at will" landlord and tenant relationship without a written lease. The terms of the tenancy depend on the frequency of the rental payments. For example, tenants who pay weekly have a seven-day tenancy with the landlord, while those paying rent every month have a 30-day tenancy. A lease agreement is an opportunity for the landlord and tenant to put in writing obligations that are not included in the Indiana Residential Landlord and Tenant Act, such as rules regarding pets or late fees.
Reasons for Eviction
In a tenancy that involves a lease agreement, the landlord must have a reason to evict the tenant, such as non-payment of rent or violation of the agreement. In a month-to-month tenancy, the landlord does not need a reason to end the arrangement unless it is before the terms of the tenancy. For example, when a landlord and tenant have a monthly tenancy and the landlord chooses to remove the tenant before the end of the 30-day arrangement, the landlord must start the eviction process by sending the tenant a notice in writing.
Read More: How to Stop Eviction
To end the tenancy, the landlord must provide the tenant with a notice equal to the time in the rental arrangement. For example, if a tenant pays monthly, the landlord must give a 30-day notice to end the tenancy. An eviction is not necessary to end the arrangement without a lease agreement. If tenants fail to vacate the property, the landlord must follow the eviction process in Indiana to remove the tenant from the property.
Notice to Quit
When evicting a tenant without a lease agreement, the landlord must send the tenant a notice to quit before filing an eviction with the court. A notice to quit provides the tenant with an opportunity to correct the issue before a court date is set. For example, if a landlord files a 10-day notice to pay rent or vacate the property, the tenant can avoid eviction by paying the back rent. Tenants who remain on the property past the end of the tenancy do not have an opportunity to correct the problem before a court date.
The eviction hearing is an opportunity for both the landlord and tenant to state their case before the court. The court will determine who should have possession of the property. Landlords must show the court that the tenant stayed beyond the terms of the tenancy.
Appeals and Second Hearings
Tenants have an opportunity to appeal the decision of the court if they feel it is incorrect. The court will set a date for a second hearing to determine damages such as back rent or payment for property damage the tenant may owe the landlord.
Luanne Kelchner works out of Daytona Beach, Florida and has been freelance writing full time since 2008. Her ghostwriting work has covered a variety of topics but mainly focuses on health and home improvement articles. Kelchner has a degree from Southern New Hampshire University in English language and literature.