Arizona Revised Statutes Title 12 – Arizona Forcible Entry and Detainer Laws
CHAPTER 8 – SPECIAL ACTIONS AND PROCEEDINGS RELATING TO PROPERTY
ARTICLE 4. Forcible Entry and Detainer
§12-1171. Acts which constitute forcible entry or detainer
A person is guilty of forcible entry and detainer, or of forcible detainer, as the case may be, if he:
Makes an entry into any lands, tenements or other real property, except in cases where entry is given by law.
Makes such an entry by force.
Willfully and without force holds over any lands, tenements or other real property after termination of the time for which such lands, tenements or other real property were let to him or to the person under whom he claims, after demand made in writing for the possession thereof by the person entitled to such possession.
§12-1172. Definition of forcible entry
A “forcible entry,” or an entry where entry is not given by law within the meaning of this article, is:
An entry without the consent of the person having the actual possession.
As to a landlord, an entry upon the possession of his tenant at will or by sufferance, whether with or without the tenant’s consent.
§12-1173. Definition of forcible detainer; substitution of parties
There is a forcible detainer if:
A tenant at will or by sufferance or a tenant from month to month or a lesser period whose tenancy has been terminated retains possession after his tenancy has been terminated or after he receives written demand of possession by the landlord.
The tenant of a person who has made a forcible entry refuses for five days after written demand to give possession to the person upon whose possession the forcible entry was made.
A person who has made a forcible entry upon the possession of one who acquired such possession by forcible entry refuses for five days after written demand to give possession to the person upon whose possession the first forcible entry was made.
A person who has made a forcible entry upon the possession of a tenant for a term refuses to deliver possession to the landlord for five days after written demand, after the term expires. If the term expires while a writ of forcible entry applied for by the tenant is pending, the landlord may, at his own cost and for his own benefit, prosecute it in the name of the tenant.
§12-1173.01. Additional definitions of forcible detainer
A. In addition to other persons enumerated in this article, a person in any of the following cases who retains possession of any land, tenements or other real property after he receives written demand of possession may be removed through an action for forcible detainer filed with the clerk of the superior court in accordance with this article:
If the property has been sold through the foreclosure of a mortgage, deed of trust or contract for conveyance of real property pursuant to title 33, chapter 6, article 2.
If the property has been sold through a trustee’s sale under a deed of trust pursuant to title 33, chapter 6.1.
If the property has been forfeited through a contract for conveyance of real property pursuant to title 33, chapter 6, article 3.
If the property has been sold by virtue of an execution and the title has been duly transferred.
If the property has been sold by the owner and the title has been duly transferred.
B. The remedies provided by this section do not affect the rights of persons in possession under a lease or other possessory right which is superior to the interest sold, forfeited or executed upon.
C. The remedies provided by this section are in addition to and do not preclude any other remedy granted by law.
§12-1175. Complaint and answer; service and return
A. When a party aggrieved files a complaint of forcible entry or forcible detainer, in writing and under oath, with the clerk of the superior court or a justice of the peace, summons shall issue no later than the next judicial day.
B. The complaint shall contain a description of the premises of which possession is claimed in sufficient detail to identify them and shall also state the facts which entitle the plaintiff to possession and authorize the action.
C. The summons shall be served at least two days before the return day, and return made thereof on the day assigned for trial.
§12-1177. Trial and issue; postponement of trial
A. On the trial of an action of forcible entry or forcible detainer, the only issue shall be the right of actual possession and the merits of title shall not be inquired into.
§12-1178. Judgment; writ of restitution; limitation on issuance
A. If the defendant is found guilty, the court shall give judgment for the plaintiff for restitution of the premises, for all charges stated in the rental agreement and for costs and, at the plaintiff’s option, for all rent found to be due and unpaid through the periodic rental period, as described in § 33-1314, subsection C, as provided for in the rental agreement, and shall grant a writ of restitution. If the defendant’s social security number is contained on the complaint at the time of judgment, the person designated by the judge to prepare the judgment shall ensure the defendant’s social security number is contained on the judgment.
B. If the defendant is found not guilty, judgment shall be given for the defendant against the plaintiff for costs, and if it appears that the plaintiff has acquired possession of the premises since commencement of the action, a writ of restitution shall issue in favor of the defendant.
C. No writ of restitution shall issue until the expiration of five calendar days after the rendition of judgment. The writ of restitution shall be enforced as promptly and expeditiously as possible. The issuance or enforcement of a writ of restitution shall not be suspended, delayed, or otherwise affected by the filing of a motion to set aside or vacate the judgment or similar motion unless a judge finds good cause.
§12-1183. Proceedings no bar to certain actions
The proceedings under a forcible entry or forcible detainer shall not bar an action for trespass, damages, waste, rent or mesne profits.
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