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The landlord-tenant relationship is defined by existence of a leasehold estate. Traditionally, the only obligation of the landlord in the United States was to grant the estate to the tenant although in England and Wales, it has been clear since 1829 that a Landlord must put a tenant into possession. Modern landlord-tenant law includes a number of other rights and duties held by both landlords and tenants.
Tenants entering into any rental agreement (i.e., YOU) should make a concerted effort to learn about their legal responsibilities and become familiar with the protection granted to them under the law.
Most leases specify the duration of the agreement, any terms for extending the agreement and details regarding rent payments. Because a lease is both a conveyance and a contract, two sets of duties between the landlord and tenant arise: those that exist in relation to traditional property laws, and those that arise due to the contractual promises of the lease. Many states also have legislation designed to protect the rights of residential tenants, including the right to fit housing and rules regarding evictions.
You may have a tenant that does not pay rent that fails to comply with the lease terms, whose conduct presents health or safety issues, or who conducts illegal activities on the premises. In such cases, you have a legal right to have the tenant and his or her belongings forcibly removed from your property – a process called eviction.
You cannot begin an eviction lawsuit until you terminate the tenancy by providing the tenant written notice. If the tenant does not remedy the situation (for example, by paying the late rent) or move out, you can then file a lawsuit to evict.