I admit I got behind some in rent. And made some mistakes in catching up. However, when the Default judgement was entered, i.e. I didn’t deposit enough rent to catch up/become current, I still had one last opportunity to do so, an Order to Show Cause depositing enough rent with the Court clerk to become current,
However, the landlord represented to me that I would be locked out in 3 days unless I signed a Consent to Vacate Agreement,. Line 2 says tenant will pay x amount. In my case that was $1415. It did not say for what. That amount is the amount that made me current. By paying that amount I became current. Hence the document became moot. Yet the document goes on to certain specifics ending with the tenant out or locked out by March 31.
By intercepting the due process just before the last opportunity of due process to get current, the landlord/attorney must have known this was violative of my right of due process. But it served to circumvent the Court by locking in a signed document instead.
Since it must have been deliberate in that the landlord and attorney are experienced experts in landlord/tenant matters, damages could be claimed. Also punitive damages to punish the landlord and atrtorney for engaging in this violation of due process and also to dissuade future such instances by this landlord or others.
Punitive damages could be a large amount. Whatever a jury would decide is appropriate.
This case represents an abuse of the Consent Agreement document. It is meant for an orderly transition of possession from tenant to landlord. Instead it is used/abused to circumvent the Court and trick/manipulate the tenant out. I do not know if this is a common practice. It may very well be.
I need some legal help to accomplish this.