I want to add language to my lease that states tenant must pay legal & other costs when evicted. If anyone has such language or can point me in the right direction I would appreciate it.
I would Google Lease Agreement for your state and look for the Bar approved or Realtor Association approved lease. Or you could get a blank copy from your attorney or a leasing agent and then just copy what you want from there. Or better yet you might consider using theirs.
You could put a simple clause stating that in the event of legal action for any reason that the prevailing party is entitled to legal expenses and related costs. I also added in that tenants are responsible for any fines or fees due to code violations as well.
You may find that most legal action already includes 'loser-pays' terminology. When we get a judgement in an eviction the legal fees are itemized into the the filed paperwork. A Small Claim (up to $5,000 in our state -Washington) also includes court costs.
This is the clause from the Nolo Press contract I used in California. I love the Nolo contracts, they're so simple and easy for tenants to understand, which I think is important. Simple and clear.
22.Payment of Attorney Fees in a Lawsuit. In any action or legal proceeding to enforce any part of this Agreement, the prevailing party shall recover reasonable attorney fees and court costs.
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