2016 Georgia Code
Title 44 - Property
Chapter 7 - Landlord and Tenant
Article 4 - Distress Warrants
§ 44-7-75. Payment of rent into court; transfer and possession of property pending trial; seizure; disposition of funds
(a) At the time the tenant answers, the tenant shall pay into the registry of the trial court all rent admittedly owed prior to the issuance of the summons; provided, however, that, in lieu of such payment, the tenant shall be allowed to submit to the court a receipt indicating that the payment has been made to the landlord. In the event that the amount of rent is in controversy, the court shall determine the amount of rent to be paid into court in the same manner as provided in subsection (b) of this Code section.
(b) The tenant shall pay into the registry of the trial court all rent which becomes due after the issuance of the summons and shall pay said rent as it becomes due. If the landlord and tenant disagree as to the amount of rent, either or both of them may submit to the court any written rental contract for the purpose of establishing the amount of the rent to be paid into the registry of the court. If the amount of rent is in controversy and no written rental agreement exists between the tenant and the landlord, the court shall require the amount of rent to be a sum equal to the last previous rental payment made by the tenant and accepted by the landlord without written objection.
(c) If the landlord is also seeking a dispossessory warrant against the tenant pursuant to Article 3 of this chapter, money paid into court under Code Section 44-7-54 shall fully satisfy the requirements under subsections (a) and (b) of this Code section.
(d) After the date of the service of the summons as provided in Code Section 44-7-72, the tenant shall not transfer, convey, remove, or conceal his property without either posting bond as provided in Code Section 44-7-76 or complying with subsections (a) and (b) of this Code section.
(e) If the tenant shall fail to comply with any of the provisions of this Code section, the tenant shall not be entitled to retain possession of his property pending a trial on the merits as provided by Code Section 44-7-74 unless he posts bond as provided by Code Section 44-7-76. Failure to comply with any provision of this Code section shall in no way affect the tenant's ability to litigate the issues raised in his answer but shall only affect the possession of the property pendente lite. If judgment is against the tenant, the property involved shall be seized by the marshal, the sheriff, or the deputy, as the case may be, and held thereby for levy and sale after judgment as provided by Code Section 44-7-79.
(f) The court shall order the clerk of the court to pay to the landlord the amounts paid into the registry of the court as such payments are made; provided, however, that, if the tenant claims that he is entitled to all or a part of the funds and such claim is an issue of controversy in the litigation, the court shall order the clerk to pay to the landlord without delay only that portion of the funds to which the tenant has made no claim in the proceedings. That part of the funds which is a matter of controversy in the litigation shall remain in the registry of the court until a final determination of the issues.
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