For updates on court operations during the Coronavirus pandemic, and for a complete list of Orders, please visit: https://www.courts.phila.gov/covid-19
NOTICE:

All employees and visitors entering a First Judicial District facility will no longer be required to wear a mask. All unvaccinated Exempt employees and members of the public must continue to double mask. All jury trial participants will still be required to wear a mask. Click here for full notice.

Landlord-Tenant Cases

NOTICE

Currently, we are accepting new cases in person. Appointments are preferred.

  • For questions about submitting a new case or to make an appointment call 215-686-7988
  • For questions about relisting a case or submitting a petition call 215-686-7980
  • For questions about submitting a writ of possession or alias writ of possession call 215-686-7989

What is a Landlord-Tenant Case?

The Philadelphia Municipal Court deals with cases involving a written lease or verbal rental agreement. The court can evict a tenant (the person renting a unit) or make one side pay the other. This is called a money judgment. A money judgment can be any amount. The court does not deal with cases involving a squatter and cannot force a landlord to make repairs.

A landlord can start a case to get the money a renter owes them. For example, a tenant might owe a landlord money for a repair when the security deposit does not cover the cost. A landlord can also start a case to evict a tenant if:

  1. The tenant did not pay rent after the landlord asked for it
  2. The tenant broke the lease
  3. The tenant did not leave the rental unit after the lease ended

Landlords must go through the legal court process to evict a tenant. Landlords cannot change the locks, cut off utilities or remove a tenant’s belongings from the property. These actions are illegal and come with penalties, fines, and damages. If you are a tenant trying to get your security deposit back, you can start a small claims case or start landlord-tenant case.


How can we help you today?



     

Starting a New Landlord-Tenant Case






     

Responding to a Landlord-Tenant Case






     

Going to a Landlord-Tenant Hearing




Forms

Resources

Get free legal advice or a lawyer

If you are a tenant with a low income you can get free legal advice or a lawyer from these organizations.

  • Community Legal Services
    • Call 215-981-3700
    • Free for low-income Philadelphians
    • Listen to the recording for options when you call.
    • Choose “Debt Collection or Consumer Scams” and leave a message. Tell them about your situation.
    • You will get a call back in 1-2 days.
  • SeniorLAW Center
    • Call 215-988-1242
      • Monday – Thursday, 10am - 12 pm
      • Free if you are 60 or older
      • Call and press option 2. Leave a message telling them about your situation. They will call you back.
  • Legal Clinic for the Disabled
    • Call 215-587-3158
    • Free if you have a disability, chronic illness, or are deaf or hard of hearing and have an income of 200% of the federal poverty level or less.
    • Call and press option 2
    • Leave a message telling them about your situation and they will call you back

Pay a Lawyer for Help


Call 215-686-7000 for general court information.

Contact

Business Hours

  • Monday-Friday: 9am - 5pm
  • Saturday: Closed
  • Sunday: Closed

Landlord-Tenant Information