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Amanda Thomas
Providence Group Realty - Plano, TX
​Broker, SRES®, BPOR, MCNE, ​Certified DRS Agent™

Thanks for the tag, Bruce Walter.  We don't provide property management services but can connect you with brokers in the area who do, or refer you to a real estate attorney who can provide you with legal advice and local representation services.

General Answers are inline below:

Proper notice is the first step. Make sure you are meeting requirements for notice, which includes notifying all parties residing in the home (this can be a tricky area).

To file for eviction, first locate which judge and precinct the subject property is zoned for. (Check the county website for this information.)

Although the process steps can be specific to the county, our general understanding is that Landlords do not have to present in person to file for eviction. Another party may act on his or her behalf, or a landlord can complete the paperwork remotely using a notary of their choice, and then submit the documents to the JP's office by mail (including a personal check or money order), or by fax (including credit card information for payment.

Once the paperwork and filing fees are received, the clerk assigns a case number and court date.

The next step is the actual trial, where the eviction judgment issued. After judgment is issued, a tenant has 5 days in which to appeal.

After 5 days, if no appeal is made, a landlord can pursue a writ, and must file the request for writ with the corresponding payment for writ fee. The writ is what the local constable would need in order to forcibly remove somone from the property.


1. If the eviction process is started, and the tenant moves out willingly before the court date, you can have the court date dismissed. There are generally no refunds on filing fees.

2. The initial filing requires the 'Eviction Form' and the 'Military Affidavit', as well as a signature notarized copy of your driver's license  (for which there is no form) -- [and payment]

 a. On the Eviction form

  i. Complete the 'Plaintiff' section for the landlord

  ii. Complete the 'Defendant' section for the tenant

  iii. Make certain to state WHY the tenant should be evicted

  iv. Provide documentation proof concerning notice to vacate if possible

  v. Complete requests for $dollar amounts owed

   1) A landlord can request rent up to the amount that back-rent is owed, pro-rated to the date of the trial

   2) Landlords may NOT request late fees, security deposit, damages or any other costs not listed on the Eviction Form. Best advice is to seek legal advice from an attorney, or at the bare minimum, consult the county's Law Library.

Most counties provide forms such as Request for Writ and Motion for Continuance in their online packets.

Hope this helps! Our best advice and information would be referrals to local specialists who can assist you.


May 20, 2017 12:50 PM
Bruce Walter
Keller Williams Realty Lafayette/West Lafayette, Indiana - West Lafayette, IN

Contact Amanda Thomas as she is a very knowledgeable broker and writes from time to time on Texas real estate law.  

May 20, 2017 12:33 PM
Bob Crane
Woodland Management Service / Woodland Real Estate, Keller Williams fox cities - Stevens Point, WI
Forestland Experts! 715-204-9671

Sorry about this John, evictions are never easy and the landlord always gets screwed.

May 20, 2017 10:53 PM
Candice A. Donofrio
Next Wave RE Investments LLC Bullhead City AZ Commercial RE Broker - Fort Mohave, AZ
928-201-4BHC (4242) call/text

I don't know about TX, and it looks like Amanda is da bomb when it comes to a TX primer. But if you ever want to invest in AZ . . . we're NOT tenant coddlers like Califelony. Proper service, 30 day notice, out! No woman, no cry. No continuances. If they were properly served, buh-bye. Our 'hangin' judge' for evictions is now the mayor. LOL!
When I did property management in CA . . . whew! Some of the stuff that went down. One tenant actually tried to do a 'Pacific Heights' on us. Failed because she was stupid but boy, she tried!

May 20, 2017 05:23 PM
Kathleen Daniels
KD Realty - 408.972.1822 - San Jose, CA
San Jose Homes for Sale-Probate & Trust Specialist

Holy Gads, I am so sorry this is happening.  Looks like Bruce Walter provided a great resource with Amanda Thomas ... I wish you all the best with this.

May 21, 2017 07:56 AM
Debe Maxwell, CRS | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods

WOW Amanda Thomas!  GREAT answer and best of luck, John DL Arendsen!

May 20, 2017 09:28 PM
Jeff Dowler, CRS
Solutions Real Estate - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude - Carlsbad

Good luck with getting some help from our Texas friends

May 20, 2017 08:53 PM
Richie Alan Naggar
people first...then business Ran Right Realty - Riverside, CA
agent & author

Be prepared: 

The best? Explain (with compassion & reasoning) to this tenant that this is a credit ruining situation for up to ten years. A black mark!  Please don't do this. Move out and get a reference to boot. Pay him to leave if necessary

The Worse? File that action. That alone is scary and costly. However be prepared for an answer to the complaint and or a trial and if not handled correctly or professionally...a lose for you. 

The Risk? Bankruptcy filing which delays it even more plus other games that can be played known to the local attorneys. Place in shambles when surrendered...Insurance may cover it

May 20, 2017 12:47 PM
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy

You can also contact Mick Michaud another Texas savvy individual.  A

May 20, 2017 12:44 PM
Barbara Todaro
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Franklin, MA
"Franklin MA Homes"

another reason I'm thankful for having only one investment property remaining....and it's for family members only!!!  take the front door off, they'll leave... that's how it was done 30 years ago!

May 20, 2017 11:53 AM
Ryan Huggins - Thousand Oaks, CA - Thousand Oaks, CA
Residential Real Estate and Investment Properties

I would have tagged Richard Weeks, but not only has he responded but it looks like Amanda Thomas (whom I hadn't know about) gave you an incredible answer!

May 21, 2017 04:37 PM
Dorie Dillard
Coldwell Banker United Realtors® ~ 512.346.1799 - Austin, TX
Serving Buyers & Sellers in NW Austin Real Estate

Thank you Amanda Thomas you really gave the low of the reasons I don't handle rentals! I stick to listing and selling properties!

May 21, 2017 03:58 PM
Harry Norman, REALTORS® - Atlanta, GA
Associate Broker

Sounds like Amanda Thomas has your answer.

May 21, 2017 09:43 AM
Richard Weeks
Dallas, TX
REALTOR®, Broker

I suggest you go to the Texas Property Code or this web site:

May 21, 2017 06:56 AM
Gabe Sanders
Real Estate of Florida specializing in Martin County Residential Homes, Condos and Land Sales - Stuart, FL
Stuart Florida Real Estate

I hope you get good advice from someone in Texas.

May 21, 2017 05:55 AM
Tony and Suzanne Marriott, Associate Brokers
BVO Luxury Group @ Keller Williams Arizona Realty - Scottsdale, AZ
Serving Scottsdale, Phoenix and Maricopa County AZ

Amanda Thomas nailed this one!

May 21, 2017 05:46 AM
Inna Ivchenko
Barcode Properties - Encino, CA
Realtor® • Green • GRI • HAFA • PSC Los Angeles CA

I'm not in Texas, as you know... just wanted to wish you to fix this difficult situation. 

May 20, 2017 11:46 PM
Praful Thakkar
LAER Realty Partners - Andover, MA
Andover, MA: Andover Luxury Homes For Sale

John DL Arendsen - invest in what you can manage easily is the basic rule. Now that you already have this happen to you, try to get in touch with some local there - and if need be, visit the place once.

Good luck.

May 20, 2017 10:14 PM
Wayne Martin
Wayne M Martin - Chicago, IL
Real Estate Broker

Consult a local real estate attorney on how to minimize your loss!

May 20, 2017 06:26 PM
Thomas J. Nelson, Realtor, ePRO, CRS, RCS-D
Big Block Realty 858.232.8722 - La Jolla, CA
& Host of Postcards From Success Podcast

Ask Lisa Von Domek 

May 20, 2017 02:14 PM
Fred Griffin
Fred Griffin Real Estate - Tallahassee, FL
Licensed Florida Real Estate Broker

Here are two websites I got from the Texas Attorney General:

  Texas Property Code, Title 8  Landlord Tenant,  Chapter 92 Residential Tenancies

  Texas Law Help


May 20, 2017 12:42 PM
Roy Kelley
Realty Group Referrals - Gaithersburg, MD
Roy and Dolores Kelley Photographs

Follow the rules and regulations in the community.

May 20, 2017 12:28 PM
Nina Hollander
RE/MAX Executive | Charlotte, NC - Charlotte, NC
Your Charlotte/Ballantyne/Waxhaw/Fort Mill Realtor

I hope one of our Texas agents has some ideas. It could also depend which county you're in as eviction laws aren't always state-wide, but hyper local. In any case, your best bet is an attorney specializing in landlord-tenant law.

May 20, 2017 11:39 AM
Nathan Gesner
American West Realty & Management - Cody, WY
Broker / Property Manager

Texas is generally considered a Landlord-friendly state and it shouldn't take you that long. Go to the NARPM web site and search their directory for a property manager in your area. It doesn't make sense to manage from so far away and this is perfect example of that.

May 22, 2017 05:30 AM
Gita Bantwal
RE/MAX Centre Realtors - Warwick, PA
REALTOR,ABR,CRS,SRES,GRI - Bucks County & Philadel

Good luck.

May 21, 2017 08:16 AM
Harry F. D'Elia
Real Estate and Beyond, LLC - Phoenix, AZ
Investor , Mentor, GRI, Radio, CIPS, REOs, ABR

just follow the law

May 21, 2017 06:40 AM