Pennsylvania Eviction Laws

Eviction Laws

Pennsylvania eviction laws give the following as reasons to evict a tenant.

Reasons for Eviction in Pennsylvania

  • Nonpayment of rent
  • Lease violations
  • End of lease
  • Illegal drug activity

Notice to Vacate

Landlords must provide:

  • A 10-day notice to quit for illegal drug activity
  • Five-day notice to quit for the end of a lease if the tenant has lived in the unit for less than one year
    • Tenants who have lived in the unit for more than one year must receive a 30-day notice to quit

Notice to Comply

Landlords must deliver:

  • A 10-day notice to comply or quit for nonpayment of rent
  • A 15-day notice to quit for lease violations (if the tenant has lived there for less than one year)
  • A 30-day notice to quit for lease violations (if the tenant has lived there for more than one year)

While you aren’t legally required to offer tenants a chance to remedy, it is customary.

Serving the Tenant

There are different requirements depending on what you’re serving:

  • Notices to quit or comply can be served by handing the notice to the tenant or posting it at a conspicuous place on the premises.
  • Eviction Summons and Complaints must be handed to the tenant, mailed (we recommend first-class mailing), or posted in a conspicuous place on the premises by the Sheriff or a private process server.

Tenant Possessions

Pennsylvania eviction laws stipulate that landlords are required to provide tenants with a 10-day written notice to retrieve their personal property. Service by mail to their last-known address is allowed.

If the tenant contacts their former landlord about their personal belongings,the landlord is required to hold it for 30 days. After 30 days, all unclaimed property can be thrown out or sold. Any sale proceeds above and beyond what is owed to the landlord must be surrendered to the state treasurer.

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Eviction Timeline

Below you’ll learn the average timeline for a complete eviction in Pennsylvania. This projected timeline could change based on the complexities of your specific case.

Typically, it takes anywhere between 30-60 days for the Pennsylvania eviction process.

How to Start the Eviction Process in Pennsylvania?

First, serve or post the notice to quit. An eviction hearing must be held seven to 10 days after the summons is issued.

The writ of possession shall be issued from the court within five days of the hearing and shall be delivered to the tenant if the landlord is successful at the eviction hearing. This allows the tenant time to move out.

If tenants pay all past-due rent plus any court fees prior to the issuance of the Writ of Possession, the eviction process will be stopped.

The Sheriff must serve a writ upon the tenant within 48 hours of receiving it from the court. Then, tenants will have 10 days to move out.

If the tenants haven’t moved out by the 11th day, the Sheriff will carry out eviction.

How to Stop the Eviction Process in Pennsylvania?

If a complaint was filed, file a motion to dismiss.

How Long is the Eviction Process in Pennsylvania?

The eviction process in Pennsylvania is approximately 30-60 days, but it could take longer.

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