Will Filing Bankruptcy Stop an Eviction in Arizona?

Failure to pay rent or violation of lease agreements may result in a tenant receiving an eviction notice from the landlord.

Arizona renting and leasing laws state that a landlord needs to give the tenant he or she plans on evicting a document demanding the tenant has five days to comply or quit, or pay or quit. In other words, the tenant can either pay past-due rent, comply with lease regulations or move out of the unit. If a landlord does not hear from the tenant, they can then proceed with filing eviction papers at the end of the five-day period.

While all of us want to pay rent in a timely manner, unforeseen occurrences can result in the inability to make a payment. Being laid off, unexpected medical bills due to an accident or illness or other unfortunate circumstances can prevent someone from having enough money to make a rent payment. Sometimes landlords are understanding and allow extra time for rent to be paid. However, some are not so understanding and will proceed with the eviction process regardless of the circumstance.

Can a tenant delay eviction by filing bankruptcy in Arizona? According to the 2005 Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act, the answer depends on when the tenant filed bankruptcy. If a tenant files for bankruptcy prior to the eviction notice being served, then an automatic stay prevents a landlord from issuing an eviction notice. Despite this, the landlord can legally ask the bankruptcy court to void the automatic stay in order to proceed. Frequently, a judge approached by a landlord wanting to evict someone who has already filed for bankruptcy will lift the stay because breaking lease agreements does not affect the tenantís financial condition.

Alternatively, filing for bankruptcy after being served an eviction notice may do nothing to delay the eviction process, especially if illegal drug use or excessive property damage is involved. However, landlords need some kind of proof of this kind of lease violation before continuing with an eviction that is based on these allegations.

If you are facing eviction due to sudden financial hardship and are considering filing for bankruptcy, contact a professional Phoenix Arizona bankruptcy attorney immediately to assist you in solving your housing problems and overcoming your financial distress.

Disclaimer: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, it is not intended to provide legal advice as individual situations will differ and should be discussed with an expert and/or lawyer. For specific technical or legal advice on the information provided and related topics, please contact the author.

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