After an Eviction Judgment



The information below may be helpful to landlords and tenants but is not a substitute for legal advice.

A.R.S. means Arizona Revised Statutes and RPEA means Rules of Procedure for Eviction Actions.
1  JUDGMENT
  • Once a landlord has been awarded a judgment, the only way a tenant can stay in the rental unit is by working out an agreement with the landlord or filing an appeal of the judgment and paying a supersedeas bond (see Bonds below). Any post-judgment agreements should be in writing and signed by the landlord. Keep a copy of any agreement.
  • Judgments accrue interest from the time of the judgment until paid.
  • Once a judgment is paid off, the judgment creditor (landlord) must file a satisfaction with the court. A satisfaction lets anybody who looks at the court records know that the judgment has been paid in full.
  • A judgment does not allow the landlord to take possession of the rental unit. See Writ of Restitution below.
2  WRIT OF RESTITUTION
  • In most cases, the landlord can go back to the court after five days to get a writ of restitution. A.R.S. § 12-1178. If the eviction action was filed based on an immediate and irreparable breach, the landlord can obtain the writ of restitution the next court day.
  • Writs of restitution are executed (served on a tenant or the rental unit) by a constable or sheriff.
  • The landlord may not change the locks or enter the rental unit until the writ of restitution has been issued by the court and served by the constable or sheriff. The tenant can call the police if the landlord changes the locks or enters the rental unit too early.
  • Once the writ of restitution has been lawfully executed, the tenant may not remain at or return to the rental unit without the express permission of the landlord. If the tenant remains or returns to the rental unit without permission, the tenant can be charged with criminal trespass.
3  MOTION TO SET ASIDE JUDGMENT
  • There are 10 specific reasons to file a motion to set aside the judgment (e.g., the court did not have jurisdiction to hear the case, the tenant tendered all amounts due prior to judgment being entered, the judgment is contrary to law, etc.). See RPEA 15 for the full list of grounds.
  • For certain reasons, a motion to set aside the judgment must be filed with the trial court not more than 60 days after the judgment. For other grounds, the motion must be filed within a reasonable time.
  • Filing a motion to set aside the judgment does not prevent the execution of a writ of restitution or allow the tenant to stay in the rental unit.
4  APPEAL
  • A notice of appeal must be filed within five days after the judge has signed the judgment. Filing the notice of appeal will not allow the tenant to remain in the rental unit.
  • There is a fee to file an appeal, but if a party cannot afford the fee, they may request a deferral or waiver. Ask the clerk for a fee deferral/waiver application. http://www.azcourts.gov/courtfilingfees.
5  BONDS
  • There is a cost bond of $250.00 associated with filing an appeal that can be waived or deferred.
  • A supersedeas bond can be filed with the trial court to stay the writ of restitution, which will allow the tenant to remain in the rental unit while the appeal is being heard. This bond cannot be waived or deferred. In the case of an immediate termination, the supersedeas bond must be paid to the trial court before the writ of restitution is issued. The amount of the bond varies depending on the amount of rent due (from the date of judgment until the next periodic rental date), costs, and attorney fees. Additionally, the tenant must pay monthly rent to the court on or before the monthly due date during the appeal to remain in the property while the appeal is being heard.
  6  PERSONAL PROPERTY
  • This does not apply to mobile homes.
  • The landlord must hold the tenant’s personal property for 14 days after the constable or sheriff serves the writ of restitution, but the tenant must pay for the cost of removal and storage (NOT the judgment amount) to recover personal property. Certain personal items are excluded from this requirement. For instance, landlords may take animals immediately to a shelter. See A.R.S. § 33-1368(E) and A.R.S. § 33-1370 for additional information related to personal property left in a rental unit after an eviction.
  7  SECURITY DEPOSIT
  • This does not apply to mobile homes.
  • The landlord can apply the tenant’s refundable security deposit to unpaid rent and other lawful charges after an eviction. The landlord must send an itemized list of the charges to the tenant’s last known address. If the tenant does not dispute (preferably in writing) the charges within 60 days after the list is mailed, then the charges are considered final. See A.R.S. § 33-1321(D) for more information on obtaining a refund of the security deposit from the landlord.



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