If you are a landlord employing the services of a professional property manager, do you know who is called on the lease? You should, because it could cost you money in court!
Many professional property managers have chosen to put the owner’s name on the lease, such as “owner” rather than the name of the managing company. They do this to avoid notification of process in the event of a lawsuit. They want the tenant’s attorney to go after the landlord, not themselves. In fact, in most cases, if there is going to be a lawsuit, everyone associated with the case will be notified. Therefore, this is not really an effective strategy.
But the problem for the land owner is not who it can be served by, because this is a rare case in the first place, and as already mentioned, it doesn’t really matter, because ultimately both the manager and the owner will be cared for regardless of the name on the lease. A more likely scenario would be a case where the tenant is being evicted and, in the process, chooses to respond to the eviction order. In such a case, the case will be heard by a judge, usually a magistrate. In most Georgia courts, the judge will not allow the property manager to act as plaintiff if the property management company is not listed as the owner on the lease. This is true even if the property management company filed the order, on behalf of the land owner and on behalf of the property management company under the agreement. Most judges would consider it to be practicing law without a license and would not take into account the terms of the management contract.
When the land owner’s name is stated as the owner in the lease, the court will only allow the owner, or an attorney for the owner, to address the court. If the landlord resides out of state, as many do, the landlord will suffer the cost of a trip to the city or the expense of an attorney. And if the management company tries to represent the owner, in the hope that the judge will not detect it, the court is very likely to dismiss the case, resulting in the land owner having to start from scratch with a new order. of dispossession.
The bottom line is that if the lease is written between the management company and the tenant, then the court cannot deny the property manager the right to defend his position as principal in the lease, saving the landlord so much expense. as drawbacks. So if you are a land owner, it is important that you know whose name is on the lease, especially if the property is professionally managed.