CJL Blog
The Law, Courts & Your Rights

Bankruptcy: What’s Holding you Back from Getting a Fresh Financial Start?

Bankruptcy is designed to assist people with starting fresh, but many wait too long before seeking help. A major benefit of bankruptcy is a fresh financial start. Even courts recognize that bankruptcy law is designed to give “…the honest but unfortunate debtor…a new opportunity in life and a clear field for future effort, unhampered by

Online Court Records: A Quick and Cheap Tool for Screening Tenants and Landlords

Online court records offer a great, quick and cheap method for screening tenants (and even landlords). Whenever I’m involved in a landlord/tenant case, whether in Rhode Island or Massachsuetts, one of the first thing I do is peruse online court records: I like to know whether my client or the opposing party has ever been

Residential Eviction Process for Non-Payment in Rhode Island – Step 6 of 6: Writ of Execution

A writ of execution is a formal document needed to move a tenant from a rental unit with the help of a constable or sheriff. An eviction judgment, by itself, is insufficient to remove a residential tenant from a rental unit. The landlord must still request a writ of execution from the court. Whereas a

Residential Eviction Process for Non-Payment in Rhode Island – Step 5 of 6: Judgment

The judgment indicates which party won the case and what they are legally entitled to. Following the trial, the judge will will weigh the evidence presented by the landlord and tenant and make a decision about who should prevail. The judge’s decision is memorialized in writing in a judgment. If the judgment is in favor

Residential Eviction Process for Non-Payment in Rhode Island – Step 3 of 6: Serving the Required Court Documents

The landlord must notify the tenant of the eviction lawsuit and hearing date by serving the required court documents. Service is the process for notifying the tenant that an eviction case has been filed, that a hearing date has been scheduled, and that the tenant must appear in court or respond to the lawsuit. The

Residential Eviction Process for Non-Payment in Rhode Island – Step 2 of 6: Initiating an Eviction Lawsuit

Filing an eviction lawsuit is necessary if a tenant does not respond to the landlord’s 5-day demand letter. If a tenant does not pay rent or move out in response to a landlord’s 5-day demand letter, an eviction case will need to be filed. In general, starting an eviction lawsuit for non-payment of rent involves

Residential Eviction Process for Non-Payment in Rhode Island – Step 1 of 6: Sending the 5-Day Demand Letter

The content and timing of the 5-day demand letter are governed by law. It is crucial that the demand substantially complies with the form set by law. If it does not, it will delay the eviction process. A sample demand letter can be found here, but it’s important to address the specific format and content