KUWAIT: An aerial view showing buildings scattered along the Arabian Gulf beach in this file photo.

By Nawara Fattahova

KUWAIT: The spread of coronavirus all over the world saw the suspension of flights between Kuwait and various affected countries. As a result, many people, especially expats living in Kuwait, are stuck abroad and are not able to return. According to the rent law, tenants are obliged to pay rent before the 20th of each month. This deadline is approaching soon, and tenants may face problems with their landlords.

According to a judge at the Hawally Court, the landlord has the right to file a case at the court to get an eviction order against a tenant for being behind on rent. “We don’t have such cases yet, but if the tenant is not able to pay the rent through somebody during the legal period and the landlord files a case, he will have enough time to come back, as the first court session won’t be held before a month from filing the case. It usually takes between a month and three months to set the date for the session,” he told Kuwait Times.

“When the tenant comes back to Kuwait and realizes a case has been filed by the landlord to vacate the property, he should attend the court session and bring all the documents including the airline tickets, passport and so on to prove his absence and for missing the legal period for paying the rent, and the judge will take this into consideration,” the judge said.

According to attorney Mohammed Al-Jassem, if the tenant used to pay the rent in cash to the haris and can’t pay online from the country where he is now, he can transfer the money to a family member or friend here in Kuwait to pay the rent on his behalf. If he cannot do so, and the landlord doesn’t provide him an option to pay online and files a case against him to get an eviction order, immediately after arriving in Kuwait he should pay the rent he missed while abroad at the court. He should then present the evidence of his excuse at the court session,” he explained.

“If his absence lasts for a long period, he can appoint somebody to attend the sessions on his behalf or make a power of attorney for any lawyer for this purpose to follow the legal procedures. In this way, he will protect his rights as a tenant,” Jassem added.