How to Evict a Tenant (Process)
Follow the steps below in order to successfully process an eviction in Connecticut (Summary Process) in addition to the State’s Guide (Form JDP-HM-14).
Step 1 – Give Notice to Tenant
The first step in evicting a tenant in Connecticut is to serve them a “Notice to Quit.” The minimum period of notice is three (3) days (used in most forms of tenancy). You can use a pre-drafted form supplied by the local Superior Court, or draft your own.
All notices must contain the following language in accordance with § 47a-23:
“I (or we) hereby give you notice that you are to quit possession or occupancy of the (land, building, apartment or dwelling unit, or of any trailer or any land upon which a trailer is used or stands, as the case may be), now occupied by you at (here insert the address, including apartment number or other designation, as applicable), on or before the (here insert the date) for the following reason (here insert the reason or reasons for the notice to quit possession or occupancy using the statutory language or words of similar import, also the date and place of signing notice). A.B.”
Step 2 – Serving Notice
When serving the tenant it is best to do it so that the landlord will receive some sort of evidence that the tenant accepted it. This is only possible if the notice is hand-delivered or sent via certified mail with return receipt.
For Non-Payment of Rent – The notice may only be served after the State’s nine (9) day grace period have passed. (§ 47a-15a)
Step 3 – Waiting Period
If the tenant fails to vacate the rental property within the stated amount of time, the landlord can begin the eviction lawsuit process in Court. The following forms will be required to be submitted to the Housing Session Court in the county where the property is located:
Copy of Notice to Quit (and proof it was served)
Choose One (1)
Complaint (JD-HM-8) – For non-payment of rent.
Complaint (JD-HM-020) – For “lapse of time” meaning for any reason other than rent.
Note: One (1) original Summons/Complaint and one (1) copy will need to be made for each tenant in the rental unit.
Step 4 – Serving Court Papers
The landlord must serve the tenant a copy of the filed court papers with either the county Sheriff’s office or a certified process server.
In addition to the court forms filed, the Answer (JD-HM-5) will also need to be served. The tenant will have two (2) days to respond to the action filed against them.
Step 5 – Motion for Judgment
If the tenant does not file the answer within the two (2) day period the landlord will be able to file the Motion For Judgment for Failure to Plead (JD-HM-10) and Affidavit Concerning Military Service (JD-FM-178).
If the tenant fails to respond then the motion will be sent to them and must be answered within three (3) days. If there is no further response then a judgment will be made by the court.
Step 6 – Court Hearing Date
If the Answer (JD-HM-5) is filed by the tenant then a court hearing date within 7-10 business days.
Before actually going to Trial and having the case reviewed/decided by a Judge, a “Housing Mediator” will meet with both parties on the day of the Trial and attempt to have a settlement agreed upon.
Step 7 – Order
If the judge rules in the favor of the landlord then a Order of Execution will be administered. The landlord will need to forward this to the local Sheriff’s office and they will setup a date and time in order to administer the order and inform the tenant they have twenty-four (24) hours to move-out.
If the tenant does not move-out then the Sheriff will be able to forcibly remove any and all their possessions from the property.