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Legal News, Recent Cases, Real Estate:  June 12, 2013

What Can a Hotel Do to Evict a Guest Who Isn’t Paying Rent?


Chauvel & Glatt represents commercial landlords and hotels/lodging facilities in unlawful detainer cases.
An unlawful detainer is a legal procedure adopted in California that allows landlords to evict a tenant who is not paying rent or is otherwise in violation of the lease agreement.
Although unknown to most, the unlawful detainer process actually applies to guests of hotels/lodges refusing to vacate their rooms. Surprisingly, this does happen from time to time. While there are criminal laws in place to help hotels/lodges rid themselves of guests who refuse to pay, law enforcement will not enforce these trespass and failure-to-pay laws unless the guest is doing other criminal behavior, such as destruction to property.
Unfortunately, San Mateo County law enforcement authorities will not get involved in this thicket without court authority. So it is necessary to file an unlawful detainer case, which requires a prior three-day notice to vacate before evicting the guest/tenant.
If the guest/tenant does not leave, a complaint is filed in Superior Court to obtain an order for eviction. After the landlord or hotel manager secures a court order, law enforcement will intervene and assist in the eviction.
Additional issues may also arise in this unique area of law. For instance:
  • Can you cease all services to the room if the guest has not paid?
  • When does the guest become a “tenant” for purposes of the law?
  • Can you still evict guests who pay some, but not all, of their charges?
Hopefully, the hotel guest will voluntarily leave after a three-day notice is served. After the guest leaves, the hotel should immediately change the locks to avoid an untimely return. If the guest vacates and leaves clothes or other items in the room, the hotel/lodge should itemize the guest’s belongings and place them in a locked area. With additional court assistance, the belongings can be sold and used against the money owed to the hotel.

All actions taken in the eviction process should be documented, and an attorney should be consulted so all of the proper steps are taken to ensure the eviction.

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I am in the state of Texas

Eviction after 8 months?

Hello. I hope you are well. I have been living at a motel for 8 months, I got behind $560 due to medical condition. I was in bed for 2 weeks straight, the day I went to the hospital I got locked out and they took all my belongings. I spoke to the owner and explained he agreed to let me in condition to work for him and pay in full. I told him my BF will pay the full amount when he returns ALL my belongings and I would also work here as I am not allowed to go back to work until I get a Dr release notice.
I worked here for a day, paid $300 and told him we were still checking our belongings. 1/2 of them are damaged we never got the cash that was in the room and are missing several things including expensive jewelry. Can I do something about it?

It's the motels employee's mistake.

We have been staying at a motel for about 2 weeks , were paying by the day. I went to go pay the rent on my room and one is the employees that was working at the time told me that our room was covered until the 18th , it was on the 16th but come the 18th I went to go pay my rent and short after I paid their saying that there was 2 days that didn't get paid and is giving us until 5:00pm to come up with the payment. What I want to no is how dose a motel let someone stay for any amount of time without paying NEVER!!! Well I don't no what to do. Anyone have any ideas and knows anything about the laws with this kind of situation?? Please help were homeless and no where to go

Hotel eviction

A friend of mine is getting evicted from a hotel after staying for 14 months due to hours being cut. He needed me to get him a key for his room and was advised that they need my Id in file to grant permission. Now my name is included on the 3 day notice. What can I do? I do not live there

Hotel and motel laws in oregon on evictions keeping rent

My friend paid for a room still had a week and 2 days..all because the innkeepers is discrimitory against other women my friend and myself weren't in the room more then a min. He receives a phone call telling him mins he has to pack all his belongings up and leave all of us..she would call the police if that didn't happen she didn't refund his money either. This is also not the 1st time many other motel hotel at least the wife's of these innkeepers don't allow any women visitors strictly men.