I often get asked from landlords and property managers when should I hire an attorney or can I do this myself. Although most landlord-tenant issues can resolve themselves without consulting an attorney, there are some instances when an attorney would be a valuable asset to have and may even be more cost effective to hire an attorney than to do it yourself.

Here are some examples when an attorney may be recommended.


Although unlawful detainers (evictions) move quicker than a normal civil lawsuit, the laws on unlawful detainers are highly technical and very detailed. If a landlord fails to properly fill out the notice, the complaint, or other related paper work during the eviction, the tenant can win. I have seen some landlords successfully do their own evictions; however, I have seen many lose on very minor grounds when the landlord thought all along that the judge would side with them.

If this is your first eviction, the tenant has hired an attorney, or the tenant is taking an aggressive stance towards the eviction, it may be time to discuss your matter with an attorney. It is also important to note that a property management company on behalf of a landlord or a landlord who co-owns a property cannot represent himself because all the owners are the plaintiffs in the eviction cannot represent themselves in court. Although the legal fees can add more costs for a landlord, hiring an attorney in an eviction can create a different outcome and make the process a little smoother.

Resident Manager Disputes

It is wise to speak to an attorney if you are considering evicting or firing your resident manager because in addition to the landlord-tenant issues, there are employment law issues to consider when ending the employment of a resident manager.


There are several types lawsuits that a landlord can be hit with including discrimination, property damage, or personal injury. Although many types of lawsuits are covered by a landlord’s property insurance coverage, many are not. Any time you are served with a summons and complaint, it is worth speaking to an attorney to discuss your matter.

I offer a one hour free consultation to discuss your matter. Please contact Anthony at (818) 839-5220 to set-up an appointment.