Step by step

The Eviction Process

A description of the eviction process.

Evictions are a complicated legal procedure. It is highly recommended that both landlords and tenants seek legal advice regarding the eviction process.

The Rent Board does NOT have jurisdiction over evictions. Evictions are handled at Superior Court. You should double-check all times, dates, and requirements with Superior Court or with legal assistance. If you need legal assistance you may be able to find help from our Rent Board Referral Listing.

The Rent Board can provide general information but does not provide legal advice regarding evictions.

Tags: Topic 199


10 Day Warning


10 days

Some eviction types require that a 10 day warning be given to the tenant first to provide an opportunity to correct the claimed violation. 

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A notice is sent terminating tenancy.

It may be 3 days, 10 days, 30 days, 60 days, or 120 days depending on the type of notice. Different notices have different requirements and notices may be extended in certain circumstances.

If the notice is for nonpayment, and the amount is paid before the notice expires, the landlord may withdraw the eviction and the matter may end.

If the notice is for substantial nuisance or breach of lease, and the issue is resolved before the notice expires, the landlord may withdraw the eviction and the matter may end.

You may call the Rent Board at (415) 252-4600 for information regarding notices.

While the Rent Board cannot provide legal advice we can provide general information and point you in the right direction for help.

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Unlawful Detainer


5 days not counting weekends and holidays.

A landlord files a Summons & Complaint for Unlawful Detainer. 

It is recommended that a tenant who receives a Summons & Complaint for Unlawful Detainer contact the Eviction Defense Collaborative at (415) 659-9184.

If the tenant does not respond within 5 days, not counting weekends or holidays, they may receive a default judgment. The tenant loses automatically in that circumstance. 

If the tenant, or a tenant representative responds, then the matter goes to court. As the response is a legal procedure it is recommended that tenants speak with an attorney for legal advice.

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Court - Mandatory Settlement Conference


A week before the trial date.

The eviction is set for trial.

If a jury trial is requested then a mandatory settlement conference may be scheduled.

Typically, the mandatory settlement conference is scheduled the week before trial and the parties have the opportunity to settle.

If the parties settle, then the matter is resolved and handled however was agreed upon by the parties.

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Court - Trial


Depends on court calendar.

If the tenant wins:

  • The tenant gets to stay
  • The tenant may be able to recover the cost of suit or attorney's fees. However, this is a legal matter that should be discussed with an attorney

If the tenant loses:

  • A decision is issued against the tenant
  • A sheriff will be notified.
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Sheriff's Notice

A sheriff sends a Sheriff's Notice to the tenant informing them of the time and date of the eviction.

A tenant may be able to request a stay, but that will need to be approved by a judge at a hearing.

A stay postpones the Sheriff's Eviction by one week. It will require a week's worth of rent.

A tenant should get legal advice if they wish to pursue this.

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Sheriff's Eviction

The sheriff removes the tenant from the property.

The sheriff changes the lock.

Temporary storage of tenant possessions may need to be addressed between the landlord and tenant. Tenant possessions cannot immediately be thrown out by the landlord. However, the landlord may be able to charge for storage of the possessions. Both landlords and tenants should seek legal advice regarding this matter.

The eviction is concluded at this point.


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Last updated January 5, 2024