By serving the landlord as prescribed in s. 801.11
for the service of a summons.
(3) Corporation or partnership.
If notice is to be given to a corporation notice may be given by any method provided in sub. (1)
except that notice under sub. (1) (a)
or (2) (a)
may be given only to an officer, director, registered agent or managing agent, or left with an employee in the office of such officer or agent during regular business hours. If notice is to be given to a partnership, notice may be given by any method in sub. (1)
except that notice under sub. (1) (a)
or (2) (a)
may be given only to a general partner or managing agent of the partnership, or left with an employee in the office of such partner or agent during regular business hours, or left at the usual place of abode of a general partner in the presence of some competent member of the general partner's family at least 14 years of age, who is informed of the contents of the notice.
(4) Notice to one of several parties.
If there are 2 or more landlords or 2 or more cotenants of the same premises, notice given to one is deemed to be given to the others also.
(5) Effect of actual receipt of notice.
If notice is not properly given by one of the methods specified in this section, but is actually received by the other party, the notice is deemed to be properly given; but the burden is upon the party alleging actual receipt to prove the fact by clear and convincing evidence.
Sup. Ct. Order, 67 Wis. 2d 585
, 777 (1975); 1993 a. 486
Service of process in residential tenancy on nonresident party. 704.22(1)(1)
A party to a residential tenancy in this state who is not a resident of this state shall designate an agent to accept service of process in this state for an action involving the tenancy. The agent shall be a resident of this state or a corporation authorized to do business in this state. If a party is a corporation, the agent is the corporation's registered agent.
Designation of an agent under sub. (1)
shall be in writing and filed with the department of financial institutions.
History: 1981 c. 300
; 1995 a. 27
Removal of tenant on termination of tenancy.
If a tenant remains in possession without consent of the tenant's landlord after termination of the tenant's tenancy, the landlord may in every case proceed in any manner permitted by law to remove the tenant and recover damages for such holding over.
History: 1993 a. 486
Effect of holding over after expiration of lease; removal of tenant. 704.25(1)(1)
Removal and recovery of damages.
If a tenant holds over after expiration of a lease, the landlord may in every case proceed in any manner permitted by law to remove the tenant and recover damages for such holding over.
(2) Creation of periodic tenancy by holding over. 704.25(2)(a)(a) Nonresidential leases for a year or longer.
If premises are leased for a year or longer primarily for other than private residential purposes, and the tenant holds over after expiration of the lease, the landlord may elect to hold the tenant on a year-to-year basis.
All other leases.
If premises are leased for less than a year for any use, or if leased for any period primarily for private residential purposes, and the tenant holds over after expiration of the lease, the landlord may elect to hold the tenant on a month-to-month basis; but if such lease provides for a weekly or daily rent, the landlord may hold the tenant only on the periodic basis on which rent is computed.
When election takes place.
Acceptance of rent for any period after expiration of a lease or other conduct manifesting the landlord's intent to allow the tenant to remain in possession after the expiration date constitutes an election by the landlord under this section unless the landlord has already commenced proceedings to remove the tenant.
(3) Terms of tenancy created by holding over.
A periodic tenancy arising under this section is upon the same terms and conditions as those of the original lease except that any right of the tenant to renew or extend the lease, or to purchase the premises, or any restriction on the power of the landlord to sell without first offering to sell the premises to the tenant, does not carry over to such a tenancy.
(4) Effect of contrary agreement.
This section governs except as the parties agree otherwise either by the terms of the lease itself or by an agreement at any subsequent time.
(5) Holdover by assignee or subtenant.
If an assignee or subtenant holds over after the expiration of the lease, the landlord may either elect to:
Hold the assignee or subtenant or, if he or she participated in the holding over, the original tenant as a periodic tenant under sub. (2)
Remove any person in possession and recover damages from the assignee or subtenant or, if the landlord has not been accepting rent directly from the assignee or subtenant, from the original tenant.
(6) Notice terminating a tenancy created by holding over.
Any tenancy created pursuant to this section is terminable under s. 704.19
History: 1983 a. 36
Upon the landlord's acceptance of a holdover tenant's monthly rent payment, both parties were bound to a one-year tenancy, on the same terms and conditions as set forth in the expired lease. The existence of a one-year holdover tenancy does not mean, however, that the landlord could not subsequently accept a surrender of the premises from the tenant and release the tenant from his or her obligations as a holdover tenant. Vander Wielen v. Van Asten, 2005 WI App 220, 287 Wis. 2d 726
, 706 N.W.2d 123
Damages for failure of tenant to vacate at end of lease or after notice.
If a tenant remains in possession without consent of the tenant's landlord after expiration of a lease or termination of a tenancy by notice given by either the landlord or the tenant, or after termination by valid agreement of the parties, the landlord may recover from the tenant damages suffered by the landlord because of the failure of the tenant to vacate within the time required. In absence of proof of greater damages, the landlord may recover as minimum damages twice the rental value apportioned on a daily basis for the time the tenant remains in possession. As used in this section, rental value means the amount for which the premises might reasonably have been rented, but not less than the amount actually paid or payable by the tenant for the prior rental period, and includes the money equivalent of any obligations undertaken by the tenant as part of the rental agreement, such as payment of taxes, insurance and repairs.
History: 1993 a. 486
This section requires a minimum award of double rent when greater damages have not been proved. Vincenti v. Stewart, 107 Wis. 2d 651
, 321 N.W.2d 340
(Ct. App. 1982).
"Rental value" includes only those obligations that the tenant is required to pay during a holdover period regardless of whether or not the tenant uses the premises. Univest Corp. v. General Split Corp. 148 Wis. 2d 29
, 435 N.W.2d 234
Recovery of rent and damages by landlord; mitigation. 704.29(1)(1)
Scope of section.
If a tenant unjustifiably removes from the premises prior to the effective date for termination of the tenant's tenancy and defaults in payment of rent, or if the tenant is removed for failure to pay rent or any other breach of a lease, the landlord can recover rent and damages except amounts which the landlord could mitigate in accordance with this section, unless the landlord has expressly agreed to accept a surrender of the premises and end the tenant's liability. Except as the context may indicate otherwise, this section applies to the liability of a tenant under a lease, a periodic tenant, or an assignee of either.
In this subsection, "reasonable efforts" mean those steps that the landlord would have taken to rent the premises if they had been vacated in due course, provided that those steps are in accordance with local rental practice for similar properties.
In any claim against a tenant for rent and damages, or for either, the amount of recovery is reduced by the net rent obtainable by reasonable efforts to rerent the premises. In the absence of proof that greater net rent is obtainable by reasonable efforts to rerent the premises, the tenant is credited with rent actually received under a rerental agreement minus expenses incurred as a reasonable incident of acts under sub. (4)
, including a fair proportion of any cost of remodeling or other capital improvements. In any case the landlord can recover, in addition to rent and other elements of damage, all reasonable expenses of listing and advertising incurred in rerenting and attempting to rerent, except as taken into account in computing the net rent under the preceding sentence. If the landlord has used the premises as part of reasonable efforts to rerent, under sub. (4) (c)
, the tenant is credited with the reasonable value of the use of the premises, which is presumed to be equal to the rent recoverable from the defendant unless the landlord proves otherwise. If the landlord has other similar premises for rent and receives an offer from a prospective tenant not obtained by the defendant, it is reasonable for the landlord to rent the other premises for the landlord's own account in preference to those vacated by the defaulting tenant.
(3) Burden of proof.
The landlord must allege and prove that the landlord has made efforts to comply with this section. The tenant has the burden of proving that the efforts of the landlord were not reasonable, that the landlord's refusal of any offer to rent the premises or a part thereof was not reasonable, that any terms and conditions upon which the landlord has in fact rerented were not reasonable, and that any temporary use by the landlord was not part of reasonable efforts to mitigate in accordance with sub. (4) (c)
; the tenant also has the burden of proving the amount that could have been obtained by reasonable efforts to mitigate by rerenting.
(4) Acts privileged in mitigation of rent or damages.
The following acts by the landlord do not defeat the landlord's right to recover rent and damages and do not constitute an acceptance of surrender of the premises:
Entry, with or without notice, for the purpose of inspecting, preserving, repairing, remodeling and showing the premises;
Rerenting the premises or a part thereof, with or without notice, with rent applied against the damages caused by the original tenant and in reduction of rent accruing under the original lease;
Use of the premises by the landlord until such time as rerenting at a reasonable rent is practical, not to exceed one year, if the landlord gives prompt written notice to the tenant that the landlord is using the premises pursuant to this section and that the landlord will credit the tenant with the reasonable value of the use of the premises to the landlord for such a period;
Any other act which is reasonably subject to interpretation as being in mitigation of rent or damages and which does not unequivocally demonstrate an intent to release the defaulting tenant.
History: 1993 a. 486
; 1995 a. 85
Acceptance of the surrender of premises terminated the lease and deprived the landlord of the right to seek future rent. First Wisconsin Trust Co. v. L. Wiemann Co. 93 Wis. 2d 258
, 286 N.W.2d 360
A court's retention of jurisdiction to determine damages for rents not yet due is permitted. Mitigation expenses that may be recovered are limited to necessary expenses incurred and do not include compensation for time spent in mitigating damages. Kersten v. H.C. Prange Co. 186 Wis. 2d 49
, 520 N.W.2d 99
(Ct. App. 1994).
A landlord may elect to accept the surrender of premises by a tenant, which terminates any further obligation of the tenant under the lease, but which also relieves the landlord from the obligation to apply payments from the new tenant to the former tenant's unpaid rental obligations. CCS North Henry, LLC v. Tully, 2001 WI App 8, 240 Wis. 2d 534
, 624 N.W.2d 847
Whenever a landlord does not, by word or deed, accept the surrender of leased premises following a tenant's removal, the landlord must mitigate damages by attempting to re-rent the premises. If a landlord elects to hold the tenant to the tenancy, the landlord's re-renting the premises to another cannot, standing alone, constitute an acceptance of surrender of the premises. A landlord's actions in dealing exclusively with a successor tenant, proposing a new long-term lease to the successor, accepting higher rent from the successor as called for in the proposed lease, and failing to communicate in any way to the tenant that she deemed him responsible for the remainder of the tenancy clearly evidenced an intent to accept the tenant's surrender of the premises. Vander Wielen v. Van Asten, 2005 WI App 220, 287 Wis. 2d 726
, 706 N.W.2d 123
A landlord has an obligation to rerent when a tenant breaches a lease. Specific performance is not a proper remedy. Chi-Mil. Corp. v. W. T. Grant Co. 422 F. Supp. 46
Remedy on default in long terms; improvements. 704.31(1)(1)
If there is a default in the conditions in any lease or a breach of the covenants thereof and such lease provides for a term of 30 years or more and requires the tenant to erect or construct improvements or buildings upon the land demised at the tenant's own cost and exceeding in value the sum of $50,000, and such improvements have been made and the landlord desires to terminate the lease and recover possession of the property described therein freed from all liens, claims or demands of such lessee, the landlord may, in case of any breach or default, commence an action against the tenant and all persons claiming under the tenant to recover the possession of the premises leased and proceed in all respects as if the action was brought under the statute to foreclose a mortgage upon real estate, except that no sale of the premises shall be ordered.
The judgment shall determine the breach or default complained of, fix the amount due the landlord at such time, and state the several amounts to become due within one year from the entry thereof, and provide that unless the amount adjudged to be due from the tenant, with interest thereon as provided in the lease or by law, shall be paid to the landlord within one year from the entry thereof and the tenant shall, within such period, fully comply with the judgment requiring the tenant to make good any default in the conditions of the lease, that the tenant and those claiming under the tenant shall be forever barred and foreclosed of any title or interest in the premises described in the lease and that in default of payment thereof within one year from the entry of the judgment the tenant shall be personally liable for the amount thereof. During the one-year period ensuing the date of the entry of the judgment the possession of the demised premises shall remain in the tenant and the tenant shall receive the rents, issues and profits thereof; but if the tenant fails to comply with the terms of the judgment and the same is not fully satisfied, and refuses to surrender the possession of the demised premises at the expiration of said year, the landlord shall be entitled to a writ of assistance or execution to be issued and executed as provided by law.
This section does not apply to a lease to which a local professional baseball park district created under subch. III of ch. 229
, the Wisconsin Quality Home Care Authority, or the Fox River Navigational System Authority is a party.
Residential rental property in foreclosure. 704.35(1)(1)
Duty of landlord to provide notice of foreclosure.
If a foreclosure action has been commenced against residential rental property, during the pendency of the action and before the expiration of the redemption period, the owner of the property shall notify any prospective tenant in writing of all of the following:
That a foreclosure action has been commenced against the rental property.
If judgment has been entered, the date on which the redemption period expires.
(2) Rental agreement must verify notice or is voidable.
Any rental agreement entered into between the property owner and a tenant during the pendency of the foreclosure action and before the expiration of the redemption period shall include a separate written statement, signed by the tenant, that the owner has provided written notice as required under sub. (1)
. A rental agreement that does not include the statement signed by the tenant is voidable at the option of the tenant.
(3) Tenant protections.
The protections under s. 846.35
apply to a residential tenant if a foreclosure action is or has been commenced against the real property containing the dwelling unit occupied by the tenant.
History: 2009 a. 2
Residential Tenants in Foreclosure Act: Protecting Tenants. Silverman. Wis. Law. Aug. 2009.
Remedies available when tenancy dependent upon life of another terminates. 704.40(1)
Any person occupying premises as tenant of the owner of a life estate or any person owning an estate for the life of another, upon cessation of the measuring life, is liable to the owner of the reversion or remainder for the reasonable rental value of the premises for any period the occupant remains in possession after termination of the life estate. Rental value as used in this section has the same meaning as rental value defined in s. 704.27
The owner of the reversion or remainder can remove the occupant in any lawful manner including eviction proceedings under ch. 799
If the occupant has no lease for a term, upon terminating the occupant's tenancy by giving notice as provided in s. 704.19
If the occupant is in possession under a lease for a term, upon termination of the lease or one year after written notice to the occupant given in the manner provided by s. 704.21
whichever occurs first, except that a farm tenancy can be terminated only at the end of a rental year.
The occupant must promptly after written demand give information as to the nature of the occupant's possession. If the occupant fails to do so, the reversioner or remainderman may treat the occupant as a tenant from month-to-month.
History: 1979 c. 32
s. 92 (16)
; 1993 a. 486
Rental agreement that restricts access to certain services is void.
A rental agreement is void and unenforceable if it allows a landlord in a residential tenancy to do any of the following because a tenant has contacted an entity for law enforcement services, health services, or safety services:
Bring an action for possession of the premises.
Refuse to renew a rental agreement.
History: 2007 a. 184
Retaliatory conduct in residential tenancies prohibited. 704.45(1)(1)
Except as provided in sub. (2)
, a landlord in a residential tenancy may not increase rent, decrease services, bring an action for possession of the premises, refuse to renew a lease or threaten any of the foregoing, if there is a preponderance of evidence that the action or inaction would not occur but for the landlord's retaliation against the tenant for doing any of the following:
Making a good faith complaint about a defect in the premises to an elected public official or a local housing code enforcement agency.
Complaining to the landlord about a violation of s. 704.07
or a local housing code applicable to the premises.
Exercising a legal right relating to residential tenancies.
Notwithstanding sub. (1)
, a landlord may bring an action for possession of the premises if the tenant has not paid rent other than a rent increase prohibited by sub. (1)
This section does not apply to complaints made about defects in the premises caused by the negligence or improper use of the tenant who is affected by the action or inaction.
History: 1981 c. 286
Disclosure duty; immunity for providing notice about the sex offender registry. 704.50(1)
Except as provided in sub. (2)
, a landlord or his or her agent has no duty to disclose to any person in connection with the rental of real property any information related to the fact that a particular person is required to register as a sex offender under s. 301.45
or any information about the sex offender registry under s. 301.45
If, in connection with the rental of real property, a person requests of a landlord or his or her agent information related to whether a particular person is required to register as a sex offender under s. 301.45
or any other information about the sex offender registry under s. 301.45
, the landlord or agent has a duty to disclose such information, if the landlord or agent has actual knowledge of the information.
Notwithstanding sub. (2)
, the landlord or agent is immune from liability for any act or omission related to the disclosure of information under sub. (2)
if the landlord or agent in a timely manner provides to the person requesting the information written notice that the person may obtain information about the sex offender registry and persons registered with the registry by contacting the department of corrections. The notice shall include the appropriate telephone number and Internet site of the department of corrections.
History: 1999 a. 89
Self-service storage facilities. 704.90(1)(a)
"Default" means the lessee fails to pay rent or other charges due under a rental agreement for a period of 7 consecutive days after the due date under the rental agreement.