What to do after the eviction hearing
Procedures after obtaining an eviction judgment
Here’s a general outline of how matters proceed after you have obtained a eviction judgment.
In Franklin County, the first step after obtaining an eviction judgment is to apply for a writ of restitution which is also known as a red tag. I usually do this on behalf of the landlord and I do it the same day of the eviction judgment/hearing. The bailiff will generally post the red tag at the rental unit two business days after my application. The red tag informs the tenant that an eviction judgment has been granted against him/her and he/she has five days to leave the premises. The day of posting, weekends and holidays count in determining the five days.
If, after the five days has passed, the tenant has refused to leave the rental unit, the landlord must inform the attorney. At that point, an application for set out can be applied and paid for. The landlord may call into the bailiff’s office in Franklin County at 614-645-7780 the next business day following the filing of the application for set out. The landlord must call between the hours of 8:00 am and 9:30 am in order to schedule a set out with the bailiff. The bailiffs leave at 9:30 am in order to perform their duties for the day.
Generally, a set out is not required as the vast majority of tenants leave within the five day red tag period. If a set out is required, the bailiff will only supervise the set out. The landlord has to provide a team of four people, boxes, and tarps (in the event of inclement weather) for the set out. The bailiff will supervise the setting out of the tenant’s belongings, and the set out should take about an hour. If the landlord does not meet the bailiff with the necessary personnel (four people), the set out may be postponed.
The landlord should change the locks at this point, reset the password on any alarm system, change the code on the garage door opener and take any other means necessary to secure the premises at this time. I’ve heard of tenants who break into the rental unit after the set out in order to take appliances and do damage to the premises.
If you would like to proceed with the second cause of action for damages against the tenant, then you can do so only after you have taken an inventory of the damages at the rental unit. This inventory takes place at or after the set out. You cannot fully assess your damages until after the tenant has vacated the unit. A walk-through prior to the tenant leaving really serves no purpose in a damages calculation. You will need to obtain appropriate documentation to pursue your tenant for damages including photos, invoices and estimates. The landlord should also prepare an itemization of damages to be deducted against the security deposit at this time as well.