Need Attorney to file eviction for New Jersey LLC?

8 Replies

Hello biggerpockets,   

My property in Hudson county New Jersey is owned by a LLC. I need to evict a tenant for non-payment now. Do I need to hire an attorney to kick off the eviction process? Or can I file the case myself now and then hire attorney only if I actually need to appear in court? Based on my past experience, most tenants will pay rent when they see the notice. Thank you

I believe you have to be represented by an attorney for any papers filed in court because the property is in a LLC. Here is the link to the self-help center of NJ Courts, which includes landlord information.  The information you're looking for is on page 1 of the 'Info for Landlords' pdf.  You could still personally serve tenant with a notice of failure to pay rent and that would be included in any court filings.  

Good luck!

Thank you. I just talked to two attorneys but they are charging $1k flat fee for the whole case. Since I am expecting the tenant will pay as soon as they receive the notice, I am looking for an attorney who will just charge me for submitting paperwork to the court and probably some initial consultation/evaluation.  It is a non-payment eviction so it is relatively straight forward to start with.  Any referral is appreciated. 

I would keep calling attorneys to price out different options.  For this, since you seem certain that the tenant will pay and therefore take less time, you may want to ask to put down a 1K retainer (it seems to be the number these attorney think it will cost) and you pay an hourly rate, which you negotiate.  Just be prepared to pay more than 1K if the tenant chooses to stay.  The retainer should be refunded to you once you pay your bill.  You can call the Hudson County Bar Assoc for additional referrals. 

When an attorney enters an appearance on a case he is married to it until a judge lets him out. I would be very cautious about hiring an attorney who signs on to represent you piecemeal. If he files documents with his name attached he must be prepared to go to court, regardless of your hopeful views.

There is nothing wrong with you filing all of the paperwork- in fact you could very well get away with prosecuting an eviction even though you have an LLC unless you were called on it. I would recommend against it.

$1000 sounds like a good deal

I would recommend Adrienne Lepore.  She is awesome.  Has been so helpful in Hudson County.  Please tell her I referred you!  The retainer will likely be $1200 to $1500 but if it doesnt cost that much it will be reimbursed after the eviction is complete.

I don't think you can file the complaint yourself if the unit is owned by an LLC.

If you think they will respond to a formal notice, send them a letter stating you have begun the eviction process for failure to pay rent and they can expect a notice from the court shortly.  However, you will cancel the eviction proceedings if you receive payment in full by X date.

How about if the property is owned under my personal name but the lease is listed through my LLC? I have court this Thursday (7/26) for non-payment and was told over the phone I would need an attorney. I am having a hard time locking one up. I also wasn't expecting the expense. This is my first property and they have only been there 3 months. What would happen if I was to show up alone?

Our properties are owned in TRUSTS.     Do we still  need an attorney?    If not, does the trustee need to appear, or can it be someone the Trustee assigns (like a manager)?   If I need an attorney, who is the "go to" eviction attorney for Warren County?