This page has been updated because of the Housing Stability and Tenant Protection Act of 2019.

Being Evicted

In an eviction, a law enforcement officer, like a Marshal, Sheriff, or Constable, comes to your home, changes the locks, or removes your things, and makes you and your family leave. It is illegal for a landlord or owner to change your locks and evict you if you have lived in the home for more than 30 days. Only a Marshal, Sheriff or Constable can evict you and only after the landlord has taken you to court and won a judgment against you. If the landlord changes your locks without a court order it is a crime, call the police, 911.


Notice of Eviction

If the landlord wins a judgment against you, you will get a 14 day Notice of Eviction paper from a Marshal, Sheriff or Constable. This tells you that you will be evicted from your home in at least 14 days. This can happen even when you miss your court date. You can call the number on the Notice of Eviction and ask when your eviction is going to happen. It must take place on a business day, no weekends, and must be done during daylight hours.

You are entitled to more notice if you live in a mobile home and rent space in a mobile home park from the park owner or operator. You are entitled to a 30 day Notice of Eviction for a nonpayment case, or a 90 day Notice of Eviction for a holdover case.

Rent Demands, Termination Notices and Notices of Petition and Petitions, are not the same as a Notice of Eviction. Getting these papers means that the landlord plans to start, or started, a case against you. Read the papers you get. Only the 14 day Notice of Eviction means you are being evicted.


Stopping an Eviction and Staying an Eviction

To stop or stay an eviction you need to ask the court in writing by filling out an Order to Show Cause and bringing it to the courthouse as soon as possible. If the Judge signs the Order to Show Cause with a stay of the eviction, this will stop the eviction after you deliver the court papers to the landlord until you come back to court on the new court date. Read How to Ask the Court for Something to learn about Orders to Show Cause. If the landlord got a default judgment against you because you missed your court date, you can ask the court to cancel the judgment and let you defend the case. Read Vacating a Default Judgment and use the Court’s DIY Form program to make the court papers that you need.

It may be very hard to stop the eviction if the landlord has a judgment against you after a trial, or if you didn’t keep promises you made in a settlement. But, the court has the power to stop the eviction for a period of time (stay the eviction), or stop the eviction for good and cancel the judgment, before the Marshal does the eviction. The court can stay the eviction for up to 1 year if you prove that you cannot find a similar home in the same neighborhood, or that moving would cause you extreme hardship. Factors include things like, serious ill health, or how it would effect your child to change schools. If the court stays the eviction, you must pay money to continue living there in the amount you paid as rent.

In a nonpayment case, if you pay the full amount of the rent due to the court before the Marshal does the eviction, the Court must cancel the warrant of eviction. The landlord can try to argue to the court that the you didn’t pay the rent in bad faith and that the eviction should still take place.

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