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Late on rent/utilities, now in hospital, can I enter apartment?  

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We have a home that has a separate unit attached that we rent. We accepted our tenant knowing she did not have a job but was on unemployment, she had $ in the bank (enough for 3-4 mo)., had the security and pet deposits which she paid with no issues. had great references--and had good intentions of finding a job. Signing a 6 mo.lease, she paid well and watched our property when we would be away and was a good tenant--and good person. Signed a new lease for 1 year which she then began paying $200 week payments instead of the full $600-- until finally it dwindled to zero payments. She's now 2-1/2 mo. past due along w/owing us two utility bills (which we kept in our name to help her out).
She now has developed blood clots in her leg/s so has medical bills she says she must pay (and not us apparently).
Today, sadly, she was taken to the hospital after neighbors found her passed out in the yard/doorway; she was not coherent. The medics and neighbors found her place is not clean (she'd been sick in the bathroom sink, garbage overflowing, filthy floor and smelly dishes in the sink) plus it smells like cigarettes so apparently she is smoking inside, also (which is against the lease). Plus she has a small dog who is quite dirty and smells.
Since this unit is attached to the main house, do we have the right to go inside--- to clean up the vomit and take out the garbage and to care for her dog since this unit is attached to our home and will pose a risk of roaches and other pests--to both hers and our home---plus her small dog needs care, too? Her out-of-town sister gave us verbal permission but my husband said it's not enough that we need the tenants written authorization to enter.

Also, if she winds up in the hospital more than one night, what rights do we have in regards to the dog as we do not have the time to come back & forth several times a day to walk the dog.
one more thing--we moved out 1 month ago and expected to rent our part of the house. No longer being on the premises, does that make a difference in what we can or can not do w/the tenants place?

Please advise as we need to know. Also, I am sure you will say we need to begin the eviction process right away. Thank you so much for any knowledge you can share. I am all ears. Thank you.
Linda

 
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Do you have a right of entry clause in your lease?
That will have a big bearing on your situation...

 
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Yes, we have that in our agreement.

 
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