The Delaware five (5) day notice to pay or quit is to be served to a tenant who has failed to pay their rent after the 5-day grace period (and 8 days if the landlord’s office is located outside the county of the property). If the tenant does not pay the late rent or vacate the property the landlord will be forced to file a “Summary Process” which is an eviction with the Justice of Peace in the area where the property is located. Sending – It is recommended that the landlord send the notice by certified mail (with return receipt),
Delaware Eviction Notices | 5, 7, and 60 Day Notices to Quit
A Delaware eviction notice gives the landlord the right to inform a tenant that they have violated their lease agreement. In accordance with State laws, the landlord must give at least five (5) days notice for late rent, seven (7) days’ notice for other violations, and sixty (60) days’ notice if they wish to cancel a month-to-month rental agreement.
All notices are highly recommended to be sent via certified letter with return receipt or be hand-delivered in an attempt to obtain the tenant’s signature as proof of receiving the notice.
Non-Payment – 5 days § 5502
Non-Compliance – 7 days § 5513
Lease Termination (Month-to-Month Lease) – 60 Days § 5106
The Delaware seven (7) day notice to comply or quit is an official letter that is given to a tenant who has breached their lease for any type of material violation other than rent. The notice may be sent or given to the tenant immediately upon the infraction being known to the landlord. After receiving the tenant will have seven (7) days to correct or “cure” the issue or have to vacate the premises. If the tenant does neither the landlord will have the option to file an eviction (summary process). Laws – § 5513
The Delaware sixty (60) day notice to quit is sent by the landlord when they want to cancel a current month-to-month rental agreement with the tenant. Under the laws in Delaware, a minimum of sixty (60) days is required for the landlord to provide the tenant in order for them to arrange another residence and move-out. During this time, both parties will be bound to the same terms and conditions of the lease including the payment of rent, landlord’s upkeep with the premises, etc. Laws – § 5106
How to Evict a Tenant (Process)
An eviction, or “summary process”, is the action of removing a tenant and obtaining possession of the property through the legal court process. Follow the instructions below in order to regain possession of a landlord’s property from a tenant.
Step 1 – Sending Notice
In order to start the eviction procedure (Summary Possession), the landlord will need to give notice to the tenant that there is an issue with their tenancy. This can be done in one (1) of the following three (3) ways:
5-Day Notice to Pay or Quit – If the tenant is late on their rent payment. The notice may be sent five (5) days after rent is late (grace period) and eight (8) days if the landlord or their management company does not have a office in the county of the property.
7-Day Notice to Comply or Quit – For any violation of the lease other than late rent. This may be sent immediately after the landlord is aware of a breach of the lease.
60-Day Notice to Quit – The landlord’s intention to terminate a month-to-month rental agreement with the tenant. The State requires that at least sixty (60) days’ notice is required unless a longer period is stated in the written agreement.
Step 2 – Submit to Court
If the tenant does not comply with the notice to quit the landlord will be forced to file an eviction action (“summary process”). This is done by filing the following documents with the Justice of the Peace in the jurisdiction of where the property is located:
1. Copy of the Notice to Quit
3. *Certificate of Representation (Form 50) – Only for business entities.
There will need to be four (4) copies made of each and a check for the filing fee of $40.
The court will serve the papers to the tenant unless the landlord would rather do it themselves.
Step 3 – Court Hearing Date
No matter what happens a court hearing date will be set with the landlord and tenant both required to attend. The tenant has the option of filing the Answer (Civ. Form No. 7) but it is not required as they can represent themselves at the time of the hearing.
Step 4 – Writ of Possession
If the tenant has not removed themselves from the premises for ten (10) days the landlord may file a Writ of Possession (Form No. 20B). The filing fee is $35 and, if approved, will issue an order that the tenant has twenty-four hours to remove themselves from the premises. § 5715