General Eviction Notice requirements

An eviction notice is a legal document that terminates a tenancy and tells the tenant to vacate the unit.


An eviction notice is a legal document that terminates a tenancy and tells the tenant to vacate the unit within a specific time frame. The time frame is usually within 3, 10, 30, 60, or 120 days depending on the type of eviction.

Other names:

An eviction notice may go by different names, including:

  • Notice to Terminate Tenancy
  • Notice to Vacate
  • Notice to Quit
  • Notice to Cure or Quit
  • Notice to Pay Rent or Quit

10 day warning

Some evictions require that the landlord first send the tenant a written warning notice (check the Forms Center for a current copy of Form 1008) that describes the alleged violation and informs the tenant that a failure to correct the violation within 10 days may result in the initiation of eviction proceeding.

However, the 10-day warning period is not required for evictions based on the tenant creating a serious and imminent risk of injury or property damage. The written warning notice is required to precede a formal eviction notice under California Code of Civil Procedure §1161, not replace it, and any additional “cure” period required by State law must be provided in addition to the 10-day warning period.

Notice requirements

  • To be legally effective, an eviction notice must be served and in writing
  • All state laws must be followed when serving the eviction notice
  • A specific time frame should be listed (usually within 3, 10, 30, 60, or 120 days)
  • The notice must state the "just cause" reason for the eviction, which must be the landlord's dominant motive for the eviction
  • A copy of Rent Board Form 1007 must be attached to the eviction notice (check the Forms Center for a current copy of Form 1007)
  • A copy of the eviction notice, including any additional documents attached to the notice, must be filed with the Rent Board within ten days following service of the notice on the tenant 
    • This filing requirement does not apply to evictions based on non-payment of rent

Just Cause

Most residential tenants in San Francisco have eviction protections. That means a landlord must have "just cause" to evict.

These "just causes" can include scenarios where a tenant does not pay rent, is a nuisance, or breaches the lease. This is an "at fault" eviction.

This can also include "no fault" evictions where a landlord wishes to move into a unit or wishes to get out of the rental business under the state Ellis Act.

Learn about the 16 just cause reasons to evict a tenant.

Relocation payments

Certain evictions require relocation payments. This includes:

These evictions also require the lawful rent, at the time the notice is issued, to be listed on the eviction notice itself.

See Form 578 and Form 759 regarding current relocation payment amounts in our Forms Center.

Landlords are advised to proceed with caution and to seek legal advice regarding the preparation and service of a proper eviction notice. Landlords may wish to review the Landlord Resources and Community Resources in our Referral Listing for help.

Please note that this is not intended to be a complete list of eviction notice requirements. There may be other local and/or state law requirements governing eviction notices that are not covered here.

If you are a tenant who has received eviction court papers, you can call 415-659-9184, email, or visit the Eviction Defense Collaborative for free legal help.   The Eviction Defense Collaborative is located at 976 Mission St. 415 659-9184. You can visit in-person on Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 10:00 am to 11:30am and 1:00 pm to 2:30 pm.

November 2023

Tags: Topic 202

Last updated November 14, 2023