In the state of Nevada, the landlord can evict you, the tenant for violating your lease and/or your rental agreement or failing to pay your rent. However, as a tenant, you will have legal defenses, or options that can challenge the eviction process.
Nevada’s Eviction Notices Process
When it comes to the landlord-tenant relationship in Nevada, the Nevada Revised Statutes governs this along with the eviction process.
Your landlord may evict you as a tenant, but only through either the summary eviction process or the formal eviction process when you violate your lease or your rental agreement or when you fail to pay your rent.
However, the eviction notice requirements for when you violate your lease, or your rental agreement will be a little bit different from the eviction notices that will be sent out for when you fail to pay your rent.
Your landlord can go through the formal eviction process while suing for money damages and the possession of the rental unit all in one lawsuit. However, the summary eviction process can only be used solely for gaining possession of the rental unit once again. But, if the landlord wants to sue for money damages, they still can, but they will have to do a separate lawsuit.
We will dive deeper into the entire eviction process below.
How Do Eviction Notices Work for Nonpayment of Rent?
When a landlord is evicting a tenant for not paying their rent, the landlord will be required to give the tenant their five-day eviction notice. This notice is also commonly referred to as the 5-day notice to pay rent or quit.
From the time of receiving the notice the tenant will have 5 days to pay rent or vacate the rental unit.
If you the tenant decides to challenge the eviction and you choose not to leave the premises or pay the rent, you leave the landlord with no other option than to start the eviction lawsuit, which is also commonly known as the unlawful detainer suit.
You as the tenant will receive you very own copy of the complaint and summons, which will also give you the information you need about the next step, which would be the hearing. You will have just five days to file an answer with the court of Nevada citing any defenses you wish to use to challenge the eviction that the landlord set forth.
You will then need to show up to the hearing along with the landlord, where the judge will ultimately make the final say in whether you will be evicted, or you will not.
How Do Eviction Notices Work for Lease Violations?
When a landlord is evicting a tenant for violating their lease or their rental agreement, the landlord will be required to give the tenant the same five-day eviction as they would if the tenant did not pay their rent.
If the tenant does not leave the premises or correct their lease violation within these next five-days, the landlord will then be required to send out a second notice, which is known as the unlawful detainer.
The unlawful detainer will give the tenants yet another five days to vacate the premises before the landlord starts with the formal eviction lawsuit with the court of Nevada.
If you, the tenant still decides to stay on the premises, you leave the landlord nothing else, but to start filing the paperwork for their eviction lawsuit. You will also receive copies of these records and you will be given five days to file your answer. If you decide to challenge the eviction, you should do it within these five days.
Then you and the landlord will attend a hearing, where the judge will listen to both sides of the story and make their decision if you will be evicted or you will not.
You should always keep in mind that it is not always worth fighting an eviction. If you lose, you could end up paying not only your attorneys’ fees, but your landlord’s attorneys’ fees, along with the court costs, and the negative credit rating that is to come.
Sometimes the best option as a tenant is to try and negotiate a deal with the landlord outside of the court system. Many communities in the state of Nevada offer low-cost or even free mediation services that can handle your landlord-tenant issues.
Available Legal Defenses for Tenants in Nevada
As a tenant in Nevada you will have a few legal defenses that will be available to you when you are going to get evicted in the state of Nevada.
We are going to go through those legal defenses right now.
Your Landlord is Using “Self-Help” Procedures
When a landlord will evict their tenant in the state of Nevada, the landlord must go through the court. It is illegal in the state of Nevada for the landlord to force a tenant to leave by shutting of their utilities, changing the locks, etc. on the rental unit.
Now, this type of unlawful eviction is commonly called the self-help eviction and under Nevada law is illegal.
Your Landlord Didn’t Use Proper Eviction Methods
Being a landlord in the state of Nevada, you will need to follow procedures to the dot when evicting a tenant. Especially when you are sending your tenant the eviction notices. If the landlord fails to follow the correct procedures, you as the tenant has this legal defense to delay the eviction.
However, this legal defense will not fully stop the eviction, but it can delay the proceedings and process. However, you should also keep in mind that if/when the landlord corrects their mistake, the eviction will pick up where it left off, so this legal defense is merely buying you time to remain in your rental unit.
Your Landlord is Evicting You for Not Paying Your Rent
When it comes to nonpayment, you as a tenant will have a few different legal defenses you can use.
You Paid Your Rent in Full Already
When you get your eviction notice for not paying your rent, you will have just five days to either leave the dwelling or pay your rent. If you pay your rent in full during this time period, the landlord cannot go any further with the eviction process.
However, if the landlord decides to press on with the eviction process, the tenant can use this against as a legal defense against the eviction.
Your Landlord Choose Not to do the Necessary Repairs
As a landlord it is their responsibility to keep the rental unit in a habitable state the entire time there is a tenant living there. Ultimately this means the rental unit cannot violate any health or housing codes and it must also be equipped with the following:
- Weather protection and waterproofing on the windows and walls
- Working plumbing
- Have running cold and hot water
- A working heating system
- A working electrical system
- Sanitary and clean for when the tenant moves in
- Access to garbage removal services
If the rental unit is lacking in any of the above areas, the tenant is required to notify the landlord through a letter of all necessary repairs. From the date that the landlord receives this notice, the landlord will only have 14 days to make all necessary changes and/or repairs. If the landlord decides not to make these changes or repairs during this time period, the tenant will have two options when it comes to their rent payments:
- You can withhold your rent payment until your landlord makes the necessary changes and repairs
- You can arrange to have these repairs done and subtract it from the rent that is owed to your landlord.
If your landlord then tries to evict you for nonpayment, you as the tenant can easily use this as a legal defense as the landlord failed to make the necessary changes or repairs.
Your Landlord Evicts You for Violating Your Lease
If your landlord is trying to evict you for violating your lease or your rental agreement, then the landlord is required to give you the change to fix what you violated, if applicable.
You will get a five-day eviction notice. During the next 5 days, you will have the chance to fix the violation, if applicable.
Your Landlord is Evicting You in Retaliation
First and foremost, your landlord does NOT have the authorization to ever evict you in retaliation for you exercising your legal rights including the following:
- Joining a tenant’s union
- Reporting the landlord or government authority about any and all code violations
- Filing a lawsuit against the landlord about the inhabitable dwelling
If the landlord then tries to evict you due to retaliation, you the tenant can use this evidence as a legal defense against the eviction.
Your Landlord is Trying to Evict You Due to Discriminatory Reasons
What you may not know is that there is a federal Fair Housing Act which will make it illegal for any landlord discriminate against you based on your religion, race, Familia status, national origin, or disability.
Even the Nevada Fair Housing Law makes it illegal for any landlord to discriminate against you on your sexual orientation as well.
If your landlord decides to evict you based on any of the above characteristics, you can use this as your legal defense against the eviction.