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What if the Tenant does not leave after the court gave me possession?

How do Memphis Landlords use Writs of Possession?

If you succeed in court and possession of your property is restored, the judge will tell the Tenants that they have ten days to move out or else they can be forcibly removed. Most Tenants take the judge’s warning very seriously and make alternative living arrangements. However, in some situations, the Tenants have not packed a single item and they remain in the property even after the judgment becomes final. When this occurs, you must take additional steps through the court – you cannot throw them out yourself. If you do so, you can get penalized for the court, regardless of whether they owed rent, or whether you lawfully got possession through the court.

You must file Writs of Possession to have these Tenants forcibly removed. You can hire either the Sheriff or a private process server to serve the writ on the Tenant. The writ is not completed until all of the items in the house have been removed; otherwise, you would be locking the Tenant away form his or her items. This means that you must also hire a moving crew to remove the personal property from the house. You have probably driven through Memphis before and seen piles of personal property sitting on the curb.

As long as you go through the proper procedures, you are not opening yourself up to liability on a claim from the Tenant for damages property, stolen items, etc. If you do not go through the proper procedure, you may be sued for both compensatory and punitive damages for breach of the contract and/or breach of state law.

There are a few situations where you may decide to forego writs of possession (for example, the tenant did a post-tenancy walk through with you and signed a document agreeing that tenancy has ended, or (in some rare situations) when the tenant has abandoned the property and taken all of his or her belongings also.

If you have questions about this procedure, please do not hesitate to contact for me legal representation in this matter.


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