Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 55.1. Property and Conveyances
Chapter 14. Nonresidential Tenancies

§ 55.1-1416. Authority of sheriffs to store and sell personal property removed from nonresidential premises; recovery of possession by owner; disposition or sale.

Notwithstanding the provisions of § 8.01-156, when personal property is removed from any nonresidential rental property pursuant to an action of unlawful detainer or ejectment, or pursuant to any other action in which personal property is removed from the premises in order to restore such premises to the person entitled to such premises, the sheriff shall oversee the removal of such personal property to be placed into the public way. The tenant shall have the right to remove his personal property from the public way during the 24-hour period after eviction. Upon the expiration of the 24-hour period after eviction, the landlord shall remove, or dispose of, any such personal property remaining in the public way.

At the landlord's request, any personal property removed pursuant to this section shall be placed into a storage area designated by the landlord, which may be the leased or rented premises. The tenant shall have the right to remove his personal property from the landlord's designated storage area at reasonable times during the 24 hours after eviction from the premises or at such other reasonable times until the landlord has disposed of the property as provided in this section. During that 24-hour period and until the landlord disposes of the remaining personal property of the tenant, the landlord and the sheriff shall not have any liability for the loss of such personal property. If the landlord fails to allow reasonable access to the tenant to remove his personal property as provided in this section, the tenant shall have a right to injunctive relief and such other relief as may be provided by law.

Any property remaining in the landlord's storage area upon the expiration of the 24-hour period after eviction may be disposed of by the landlord as the landlord sees fit or appropriate. If the landlord receives any funds from any sale of such remaining property, the landlord shall pay such funds to the account of the tenant and apply such funds to any amounts due the landlord by the tenant, including the reasonable costs incurred by the landlord in the eviction process described in this section or the reasonable costs incurred by the landlord in selling or storing such property. If any funds are remaining after application, the remaining funds shall be treated as security deposit under applicable law.

The notice posted by the sheriff setting the date and time of the eviction, pursuant to § 8.01-470, shall provide notice to the tenant of the rights afforded to tenants in this section and shall include in the notice a copy of this statute attached to, or made a part of, this notice.

Nothing in this section shall affect the right of a landlord to enforce an inchoate or perfected lien of the landlord on the personal property of a tenant in a nonresidential premises leased to such tenant or the right of a landlord to distress, levy, and seize such personal property as otherwise provided by law.

2001, c. 222, § 55-237.1; 2006, cc. 91, 129; 2016, c. 744; 2017, c. 730; 2019, c. 712.

The chapters of the acts of assembly referenced in the historical citation at the end of this section may not constitute a comprehensive list of such chapters and may exclude chapters whose provisions have expired.