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An eviction is a court authorized way for a landlord to remove a tenant from the leased premises.  The court procedure for eviction is also known as a Forcible Entry and Detainer (FED) action.  You can get more detailed information about the FED procedures, and arguments you could make, in a court publication available online at  www.courts.alaska.gov/forms/civ-720.pdf.

Alaska law sets out a number of reasons that a landlord can evict a tenant.  These reasons include

  • nonpayment of rent or utilities;
  • intentional damage to the dwelling;
  • illegal use of the premises;
  • violation of the lease agreement;
  • the landlord’s choice to end the tenancy if your lease has

Before a landlord begins an eviction, he or she must give the tenant a notice to quit.  The notice must give the tenant at least 7 days to pay past due rent or move out, or a specified date to fix a problem explained in the notice.  When an apartment is rented on a month to month basis, the notice to quit must give the tenant notice a full month before the rent due date.  If the tenant has not moved out or fixed the problem by the date specified in the notice, the landlord can begin an eviction proceeding by filing a complaint in court, and serving it on the tenant.

An eviction proceeding has two parts.  The first part is a hearing about who has a right to possession of the apartment.  The possession hearing is scheduled very quickly, but no later than 15 days after the complaint is filed.  If the court issues an order to evict the tenant, it can be enforced by police or law enforcement officers.

The second part is a hearing on any damages, including back rent that the tenant may owe. The tenant may file an answer to the complaint within 20 days, and may counterclaim for any damages the tenant has suffered.

The landlord does not have a right to keep your things, but if you make no effort to collect them, the landlord can dispose of them.  If the landlord believes your things are abandoned, he or she can give you notice that they will be sold or disposed of, depending on the value, within 15 days.  You may be responsible for the costs of storage.  So don’t delay in making arrangements to pick them up.