How to claim unpaid rent from a tenant? We explain the process to follow

When someone decides to rent a property, one of the recurring fears is having to face non-payment of rents.

NewsEditor
NewsEditor
24 November 2022 Thursday 00:31
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How to claim unpaid rent from a tenant? We explain the process to follow

When someone decides to rent a property, one of the recurring fears is having to face non-payment of rents. Today we will tell you how you can claim these amounts in the event that you have to find yourself in such an uncomfortable and unpleasant situation.

To make things as easy as possible, it is essential that the lease includes a clause that reflects the measures to be taken in case of non-payment. The most common is that it is stated that, in the event of non-payment of a monthly payment or rental fee, the contract can be terminated without prejudice to the debtor, that is, the tenant. And, it goes without saying, renting a property without a contract multiplies the risk of suffering a default, given the difficulty of demonstrating that it has existed legally.

To begin with, it should be noted that the process can be started from the moment the first non-payment occurs. It is not necessary to wait several months to be able to claim the amounts owed for non-payment of rent. This is something that people are often wrong about, since many believe that several months of non-payments must occur before the claim process can be started. When in doubt, it is best to always consult a professional to be well advised and ignore rumors.

The first step is usually to demand payment of the debt from the tenant. Normally this is usually done by phone or in person, but it is best to also do it in writing to record that a default has occurred and that it is being claimed. It is also very important to provide all possible documentation, as well as to identify the tenant as precisely as possible. It is quite probable that his last recognized address is the one that affects the non-payment, with which the competent judicial body will have to locate this person.

If the non-payment persists, it is time to go one step further and claim the debt by sending a burofax that reports the situation, giving it a more formal character. If after a month, the debt is still not settled, then you can start the lawsuit process to claim the amount owed or directly request the eviction. It is very important that the claim is made with an acknowledgment of receipt, since it will be reliable proof for the possible trial that the payment of the debt has been legally requested.

In this phase, it is not necessary to hire the services of a lawyer, although it is always advisable to be well advised on legal matters to avoid problems, draft documents correctly, avoid making errors of time and/or form, etc.

This is the least complicated situation when there is a non-payment of rent, since, if the tenant continues in the house, an eviction process would have to be initiated, in addition to the claim. This is optional, the law does not require it to be done, but it is logical that if a tenant does not pay accordingly, the landlord does not want to continue renting the property. The process is complicated and the situation is usually, in addition to being more difficult, much more uncomfortable and even unpleasant.

If you have already left the house, but still owe some amount, you can claim in two different ways according to current Spanish legislation. There is the option of starting a payment process and a verbal trial.

The order for payment process is a legal tool to claim monetary debts that expedites the process and can be carried out by anyone without the assistance of a lawyer, as long as the amount owed does not exceed 2,000 euros. If it exceeds that amount, it can also be started, but it would be necessary to hire professional services. That is why it is important to take into account that you do not have to wait to start the claim and it can be done from the first non-payment.

The order for payment process can be filed by the person concerned at no cost, which is also quite advantageous for the tenant. If the amount exceeds 2,000 euros, you already have to have the services of a lawyer, which logically increases the cost.

As a result of the process, the debtor can accept the debt and settle it or deny it, in which case a judicial process would be given that would lead to a verbal trial.

If you opt directly for the verbal trial, it is necessary to have legal assistance from the outset. The services of a lawyer and a solicitor must be hired to file the corresponding lawsuit before the competent court of the area in which the house is located.

Once the judge issues a sentence, most often the defendant is sentenced to pay costs and, in addition to having to pay the outstanding debt, he has to bear the expenses derived from the legal procedure. In case of not doing so, the judge can order the seizure to face the debt.

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