The seriousness of the breach will determine which type of Notice should be given to the tenant:
- A 10-Day Notice is a general notice to fix any lease violation that is significant or “material”
- Examples might include too many people in the home or having pets prohibited by the lease.
- If you receive more than one of these notices in the same rental period, different rules apply.
- A 5-Day Notice is a more serious notice to fix any problem impacting health and safety.
- Examples might include newspapers piled up in your apartment that are a fire danger, unsafe appliances, or unsupervised pets.
- Tenants should not receive a 5-Day Notice for a 10-Day Notice problem.
- The Immediate Notice is the most serious notice. This notice is sometimes called a “material and irreparable breach,” meaning the violation cannot be fixed by the tenant. The landlord can immediately end the lease.
- Examples might include dangerous, violent, or criminal activity on the property.
- Tenants should not receive an Immediate Notice for a 5-Day or 10-Day Notice problem.
A.R.S. § 33-1368(A)
From the date the Notice of a material breach was given, the tenant has 10 days to fix the problem.
If the material breach is a risk to health and safety, the landlord must give the tenant 5 days to fix the problem.
The landlord must deliver the Notice to the tenant in one of two ways:
A Notice is not an official document from the court and does not need to be signed by a Judge or notarized.
When a tenant receives a 5 or 10 day Notice of Material Breach, the tenant has two options:
1. Fix the material breach within the 5 or 10 day period.
2. Return possession of the dwelling to the landlord.
"Delivery of possession" means returning the keys to the property to the landlord and leaving the premises.
If the tenant returns possession of the dwelling to the landlord by moving out and returning their keys to the landlord within the 5 or 10 day period, the landlord cannot lawfully file an eviction Complaint against the tenant.
A.R.S. § 33-1310(3)
Additional Material Breaches
A.R.S. § 33-1368(A)
Eviction Complaint & Summons
A Complaint tells the court what the landlord or property manager believes the tenant did to violate the lease or rental agreement.
A Complaint for Material Breach filed in court by the landlord must include:
The date the tenant was served or given the required Notice.
How the tenant was served or given the required Notice.
If the tenant’s rent is subsidized, a statement indicating that the tenant’s rent is subsidized.
R.P.E.A. Rule 5(b)(7) | R.P.E.A. Rule 5(b)(8)
Once the landlord or their attorney files the eviction Complaint with the court, the court will issue a Summons to the tenant.
A Summons is an official Notice of a lawsuit. A Summons provides information about the landlord’s Complaint and details about the hearing so the tenant can go to court and respond to the Complaint.
Successful businesses have many things in common, today we’ll look at the big ‘R’of recognitional advertising network may help.
Recognition can be illustrated by two individuals entering a crowded room at a party.
By posting one copy on the tenant’s door (or another place where the tenant is very likely to find it) then sending another copy to the tenant by certified mail, return receipt requested.
A copy of the Notice that the landlord gave to or posted for the tenant.
A copy of the Residential Eviction Information Sheet (or another document containing the same information).
A copy of any items on the lease or rental agreement and/or any lease addendums (add-ons or changes) that are directly related to the landlord’s claims against the tenant.
If the landlord claims the tenant owes unpaid rent, a copy of a financial record showing the tenant’s charges and payments for the prior 6 months.
Responding to the Landlord’s Complaint
There is a fee for filing a written Answer, but the tenant may file a Fee Waiver/Deferral at the same time and ask not to pay the fee due to financial hardship. There is no fee required when the Answer is brought in open court.
If you have witnesses or evidence that you did not violate the lease or rental agreement, bring those witnesses or that evidence to court.
You CAN be held responsible for the conduct of guests to your home. The only exception is if you could not have reasonably expected the violation to occur and attempted to prevent it to the best of your ability.
If you have witnesses or evidence that you fixed the problem, bring those witnesses or that evidence to court.
If you received two 10-day Notices during the same rental term, it does not matter if you fixed the problem after the second notice. Your landlord can still have you evicted.
If the violation was related to an irreparable breach, the tenant is unable to fix the problem and this reason does not apply.
The tenant can Answer the landlord’s Complaint in two ways:
R.P.E.A. Rule 7
Violations of Arizona’s laws or rules include:
A.R.S. § 33-1313(B) | R.P.E.A. Rule 18(f)
The Notice did not tell you in detail how you violated the lease or rental agreement or how many days you had to fix the problem.
A.R.S. § 33-1368(A)
If either of these are true, the court may dismiss the Complaint.
R.P.E.A. Rule 13(a)(2)
R.P.E.A. Rule 5(e) • A.R.C.P. Rule 4.1(d)
The Summons was not delivered to you at least 2 days before the date of the court hearing.
A.R.S. § 33-1377(B) • R.P.E.A. Rule 5(f)
An unauthorized person (not a sheriff, constable, or process server) delivered the Summons to you.
R.P.E.A. Rule 5(e) • A.R.C.P. Rule 4(d)(1)
R.P.E.A. Rule 5(b)
A copy of the required Notice was not included with the Summons.
R.P.E.A. Rule 5(b)(7)
A copy of the Residential Eviction Information Sheet (or another document containing the same information) was not included with the Summons.
R.P.E.A. Rule 5(a)(5)
A copy of any items on the lease or rental agreement and/or any lease addendums (add-ons or changes) that are directly related to the landlord’s claims against the tenant was not included with the Summons.
R.P.E.A. Rule 5(d)(3)
A copy of a ledger or accounting record showing the tenant’s charges and payments for the prior 6 months was not included with the Summons.
R.P.E.A. Rule 5(d)(4)
A.R.S. § 33-1365
This might include problems with electricity, heating and cooling, insect or pest infestations, leaky pipes, or other unsafe conditions.
If the tenant wants to make a Counterclaim:
The tenant delivers a court-stamped copy of the Counterclaim to the landlord before the court hearing
The tenant appears at the court hearing to tell the judge why the court should grant the Counterclaim.
Before the Hearing
If your landlord agrees to stop the eviction, the written agreement between you and your landlord should include a promise by the landlord to ask the court to dismiss the Complaint.
R.P.E.A. Rule 9(f)
A stipulated judgment is a judgment evicting the tenant without a hearing.
It is called a “stipulated” judgment because both the landlord and the tenant agree (or “stipulate”) to whatever the judgment says without waiting to argue their cases in front of the judge.
Every stipulated judgment must include the following written warning to the tenant
1. The landlord’s attorney is not a court employee.
2. By signing, you are consenting to the terms of a judgment against you and the landlord’s attorney will now be able to evict you.
3. You may have your wages garnished and the judgment may appear on your credit report.
4. You may lose your right to subsidized housing.
5. You may NOT stay at the property, even if the amount of the judgment is paid in full, unless you get the agreement in writing or get a new written lease or rental agreement.
R.P.E.A. Rule 13(b)(4)
Preparing for an Eviction Hearing
To prepare for your eviction hearing:
Learn about your rights and options.
Decide if you want to settle, go to court, or file an Answer.
You can try to negotiate a settlement with your landlord before the hearing in exchange for getting the case dismissed. If you make a deal, get everything in writing. You should still attend your hearing, to make sure the case is dismissed. Be careful if signing a “stipulated judgment”. A stipulated judgment means you are agreeing that you owe a certain amount of money and you agree to leave the property.
Going to Court
If you leave your home without going to court, the case does not go away. If you do not attend the hearing, you will likely automatically lose and receive a default judgment.
Raise Defenses and File an Answer
If you have a defense, you have three ways to tell the court:
File formal documents with the court before your hearing
Bring formal documents with you to your hearing.
Tell the judge your story without any documents.
If you will go to court, prepare documents and evidence and make a plan to attend.
If you plan to share documents or evidence, make sure to provide copies to the landlord or their attorney and the judge.
Put the court date in your calendar and set a reminder or alarm to arrive on time. Understand how the hearing will be held and what options are available to attend.
If attending by telephone or video conference, try to find a quiet place to connect to the hearing, understand how the phone or video conference system works to mute and unmute yourself, and make sure your device or computer has enough battery or charge. If attending in person, try to arrive at the court 30 minutes before the hearing is supposed to start and listen for your name and case number.