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How to Evict a Licensee in Nigeria
In Nigeria, a licensee is someone who has been given permission to use a property or a piece of land for a specific period of time. This permission may come in the form of a lease agreement, rental agreement or tenancy agreement. However, there are instances where a licensee may refuse to vacate the premises even after the expiration of the agreement. In such cases, the landlord may need to take legal action to evict the licensee. In this article, we will explore the steps involved in evicting a licensee in Nigeria.
Step 1: Determine the Reason for Eviction
Before attempting to evict a licensee, it is important to determine the reason for the eviction. The reasons could range from non-payment of rent, breach of agreement, illegal occupation or any other reason that may be stipulated in the agreement. The reason for the eviction will determine the legal process that must be followed.
Step 2: Serve a Notice of Eviction
The next step is to serve the licensee with a notice of eviction. This should be done in writing and should clearly state the reason for the eviction, the date by which the licensee is expected to vacate the premises and the consequences of failing to do so. The notice should be delivered to the licensee either in person or by registered mail.
Step 3: File a Lawsuit
If the licensee refuses to vacate the premises after being served with a notice of eviction, the landlord may need to file a lawsuit seeking an order of possession. The lawsuit should be filed at the appropriate court and should include all relevant documents such as the lease agreement or tenancy agreement, the notice of eviction, and any other relevant evidence.
Step 4: Attend Court Hearings
Once the lawsuit has been filed, the court will schedule a hearing where both parties will be given the opportunity to present their case. The landlord should be represented by a lawyer who will argue the case on their behalf. If the court finds in favour of the landlord, an order of possession will be granted.
Step 5: Enforce the Order of Possession
Once an order of possession has been granted, the landlord must obtain a writ of possession from the court. This writ gives the landlord the authority to take possession of the premises. The writ should be delivered to the licensee either in person or by registered mail. If the licensee still refuses to vacate the premises, the landlord may need to seek the assistance of law enforcement officers to enforce the order of possession.
Step 6: Recover Possession
With the assistance of law enforcement officers, the landlord may recover possession of the premises. It is important to note that the use of force is not permitted in such cases. The licensee should be given a reasonable period of time to vacate the premises before the landlord takes possession.
Step 7: Collect Outstanding Rent
If the reason for eviction is non-payment of rent, the landlord may also seek to recover any outstanding rent owed by the licensee. This can be done through the court or by negotiating with the licensee.
Evicting a licensee in Nigeria is a legal process that must be followed to the letter. It is important to determine the reason for eviction, serve a notice of eviction, file a lawsuit, attend court hearings, enforce the order of possession, recover possession, and collect any outstanding rent owed. Following these steps will help landlords to legally evict licensees who refuse to vacate premises.
- What is a licensee?
A licensee is someone who has been given permission to use a property or a piece of land for a specific period of time.
- What are the reasons for eviction?
The reasons could range from non-payment of rent, breach of agreement, illegal occupation or any other reason that may be stipulated in the agreement.
- Can I evict a licensee without a court order?
No, evicting a licensee without a court order is illegal and could result in legal action being taken against you.
- How long does it take to evict a licensee?
The time it takes to evict a licensee depends on the reason for eviction and the legal process involved. It could take anywhere from a few weeks to several months.
- Can I recover outstanding rent owed by the licensee?
Yes, if the reason for eviction is non-payment of rent, the landlord may seek to recover any outstanding rent owed by the licensee.