If Negotiations Fail

  1. Court Filing
  2. Appeal
  3. Move Out

The eviction notice is just the first step of the legal process. The landlord cannot suddenly lock you out, turn off your utilities, or remove your belongings. If that happens, it is important to seek legal advice.

Step 1: Court Filing

A landlord needs to prove to a court that they have a valid reason to evict; such as failure to pay rent, or damages to the property.

They will need to have documentation to prove their claims. That means you need your own documentation, too.

Get a receipt for any payment the landlord accepts. If there are any damages in the home, fix them, take pictures, and keep receipts for anything that was paid for to make the repairs.
 

Step 2: Appeal

If the court rules to evict, tenants are given a limited time to appeal the decision. This timeframe varies by state. You can find that information on the Legal Services Corporation website here.

Step 3: Move Out

If the court denies your appeal, it’s unfortunately time to start packing. Your time given to move out greatly varies by state. But usually, it’s best to start moving out immediately. You don’t want to risk seeing your belongings piled up on the sidewalk.

Some states allow landlords to remove a tenant’s property out immediately after eviction. There are also states that give tenants a few days, or a week to move out. Other states give tenants about a month, or more to move out.

You can find that information on the Legal Services Corporation website here.