Basic Housing Court Procedures

January 5, 2018 | Author: Anonymous | Category: Social Science, Law, Contract Law
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Basic Housing Court Issues and Procedures

An Introduction to Practice in Housing Court in Hennepin County

Housing Court Rules 

Minn. Gen. R. Prac. 601-612

Supplement Minnesota Rules of Civil Procedure

Jurisdiction over civil and criminal matters arising under Chapter 504B

Types of Cases Heard in Housing Court 

Eviction Action – –

Rent Escrow Action / Tenant Remedies Action –

Issue: Non-emergency repair/habitability/lease/use problem

Emergency Tenant Remedies Action –

Issue: Possession claim by owner/landlord/mortgagee/vendor Formerly called an Unlawful Detainer Action or “UD”

Issue: Emergency repair/habitability problem

Unlawful Exclusion Action (Lockout) –

Issue: Possession claim by tenant/mortgagor/vendee

Four Common Legal Bases for an Eviction Action 

Nonpayment of rent

Breach of a material provision of a lease

Holding over past the end of a lease/tenancy

Holding over past the end of foreclosure redemption period

Pleading in an Eviction Action 

Variation of statewide court form commonly used. Landlord must plead compliance with agent and address disclosure requirements of Minn. Stat. Sec. 504B.181. Plaintiff must allege facts authorizing present right to recover possession of premises under Minn. Stat. Sec. 504B.321.

Facts Authorizing Recovery of Possession of Premises 

Basic facts about the lease and tenancy – –

Governing contract – oral or written Nature of tenancy 

Monthly rent amount

Identity of landlord –

Tenancy for a term Tenancy at will

Owner – Minn. Stat. Sec. 504B.001, subd. 7

Disclosures under Minn. Stat. Sec. 504B.181 – –

Agent for service of process Street address

Facts Authorizing Recovery of Possession of Premises (cont.) 

Substantive claim – – –

Request for judgment for possession –

Nonpayment of rent Breach of material lease provision Holding over Writ of recovery (formerly writ of restitution)

Verification of non-military status of defendant(s)

Filing an Eviction Action  

 

Where to file: Henn. Cty. Gov’t. Ctr. – 2nd Fl. Filing fee: $322.00 Timeline for hearing: 10-14 days after filing Service of process – – –

Sheriff Professional process server Any other disinterested third party

Personal Jurisdiction – Statutory Service Requirements  

Personal or abode service Service by mail and posting under Minn. Stat. Sec. 504B.331 – – – – –

Two personal service attempts Mailing of Summons and Complaint Filing of Affidavits of Mailing and Not Found Posting of Summons and Complaint Filing of Affidavit of Posting

Pre-Hearing Deadlines 

Removal from Housing Court under Minn. Gen. R. Prac. 602 –

Deadline: Day before initial hearing

Filing of affidavit of personal/substitute service or affidavit of posting –

Deadline: Three business days before initial hearing

Housing Court Procedure – General Limits of Court’s Discretion 

Jurisdiction over disputes related to present right of possession – –

Rent Repair issues and other violations of statute/lease

Right of redemption and eviction stays – –

Seven-day maximum for tenant redemption Seven-day maximum to stay the writ of recovery

Housing Court Procedure – Uncontested Cases

Uncontested cases heard first (with settled cases)

Determination of jurisdiction

Default  Request for immediate writ or order allowing redemption

Housing Court Procedure for Contested Cases – Settlement Options 

Free mediation available –

Repayment agreement –

Installments typically subject to threat of writ of recovery

Move-out agreement –

Option for pre-filing mediation

Vacate date subject to threat of writ of recovery

Agreement for repairs and rent abatement

Housing Court Procedure – Common Defenses  

   

Improper service Improper plaintiff or authority to appear Disclosure of a post office box address Failure to comply with municipal rental licensing requirement Repair and habitability issues Acceptance of a partial payment of rent in arrears

Housing Court Procedure for Contested Cases – Trial Issues 

Deposit of unpaid rent for some affirmative defenses – –

Discovery –

 

Repair/habitability defenses Rent withheld in reliance on a defense By order from the court, usually only if requested

Oral or written motions allowed on day of trial under Minn. Gen. R. Prac. 610 Jury trial versus bench trial

Trial Procedure in Housing Court  

 

No discovery, unless requested and ordered at initial appearance AT LEAST 4 copies of each exhibit (Court, Plaintiff/Petitioner, Defendant/Respondent, and witness) Opening statements optional Cases in chief, then rebuttal Closing arguments vs. post-trial submissions

Post-Trial Issues 

Judge Review –

Motion to Vacate Judgment / Motion to Quash Writ –

Deadline: 10 days after oral pronouncement or 13 days after mailing of written order Minn. R. Civ. P. 60.02

Motion for Expungement –

Statutory Standard  

Lack of sufficient basis in fact or law for the plaintiff’s case Interests of justice Public’s interest

Common Law Inherent Authority Standard

Enforcement of Writ of Recovery   

Where to obtain writ of recovery: Henn. Cty. Gov’t. Ctr. – 3rd Fl. Where to start enforcement process: Mpls. City Hall, Room 30 Fees: – – –

 

$55.00 for writ of recovery $100.00 for posting of writ of recovery by Sheriff Additional fees for move-out and property inventory supervised by Sheriff

Notice of date and time of eviction required Storage and maintenance of personal property – –

60 days – Minn. Stat. Sec. 504B.365 (if removed and stored offsite) 28 days – Minn. Stat. Sec. 504B.271 (if stored on-site)

Questions and Contact Information Legal Aid Client Intake: (612)-334-5970 Drew P. Schaffer, Staff Attorney Legal Aid Society of Minneapolis 430 First Avenue North, Suite 300 Minneapolis, MN 55401 Telephone/Facsimile: (612)-746-3644 Electronic Mail: [email protected]

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