New York Eviction Notices
New York eviction notices are sent by a landlord to a tenant commonly because they have not paid rent, have violated the lease, or because the landlord is terminating the lease. A notice for non-payment of rent, or “rent demand,” may be given either verbally or in writing. A notice to quit for lease violations, or “notice to cure,” gives the tenant the opportunity to “cure” their violation(s) and, if the tenant doesn’t comply, will be followed by a lease termination letter. The lease termination letter is also used to give thirty (30) days’ notice for a month-to-month rental agreement termination.
How to Evict a Tenant (Process)
Before the landlord can file an eviction suit in court, they must give notice to the tenant using the appropriate process. If the tenant has failed to pay rent on time, the landlord must issue them a written or verbal demand for that rent before filing the lawsuit. This type of lawsuit is called a “non-payment case.” Any other type of eviction suit is referred to as a “holdover case.” In the State of New York, tenant-landlord laws vary based on whether a rental property is located in New York City, and whether the property is covered under rent regulations. Therefore, landlords should always stay up-to-date regarding their local court’s policies and demands.
Step 1 – The Notice to Quit
Before filing an eviction suit, the tenant must be served with the proper type of notice. If the tenant hasn’t paid overdue rent, the Fourteen (14) Day Notice to Quit should be used. Tenants who have violated their lease will be served a ten (10) day notice to cure. If a tenant doesn’t comply with the notice to cure, the landlord will need to serve them a one (1) month notice to terminate and allow the notice period to pass before filing an eviction action in court. The termination letter gives a tenant one (1) month notice before their lease is terminated.
Notices to Quit:
New York 14 Day Notice to Quit Form — For non-payment of rent.
New York 1 Month Notice to Terminate — For a tenant who does not comply with a 10 Day Notice to Quit.
New York Lease Termination Letter — For month-to-month tenancies.
Step 2 – Serve the Notice to Quit
Although it may not be required for the Notice to Quit to be served on the tenant in the same manner as court documents, the landlord should follow the same protocol to ensure that their papers will be accepted by the court should the eviction go to trial.
To fulfill the accepted methods of service, the landlord cannot serve the notice or any other eviction documents on the tenant. Instead, the service must be performed by a process server or other individual of at least eighteen (18) years of age. The notice and any court papers can be served personally or sent by certified mail. If served by mail, the notice must also be posted on the premises of the property. Technically, a “rent demand” (14 Day Notice to Quit) may be issued verbally, unless otherwise indicated in the lease. However, it is still preferable to issue a written notice as it allows the landlord to retain a proof of service.
Step 3 – Petition and Notice of Petition
The types of forms the landlord needs to file to start an eviction lawsuit will differ depending on the reason for eviction. If the tenant does not pay the rent by the due date stated in the notice (a “non-payment case”), the landlord will need to file a Petition and a Notice of Petition for Commencing Non-Payment Proceeding. For any other type of eviction (a “holdover case”), the landlord will need to file a Petition and a Notice for Commencing Holdover Proceeding. These forms can be obtained from the courthouse associated with the area in which the rental property is located. Once the forms have been filled out, they must be signed in front of a notary and verified.
Form Packets for Use Outside New York City
Individual Forms for Outside New York City
The New York Court also offers online petition programs for small property owners to use. In order to use these services, the landlord must not be represented by a lawyer and the property cannot be regulated or have corporate/voluntary association ownership. Furthermore, there cannot be more than three (3) (for outside New York City) or five (5) (in New York City) rental units in the building.
Online Petition Program for New York City
Online Petition Program for Outside New York City
Step 4 – File the Petition
The Petition must be filed with the City, Village or Town Court of the county in which the rental property is located. If the property is located within New York City, the case should be filed with the Housing Court. When filing the Petition and Notice of Petition, the landlord should also submit a copy of the Notice to Quit and the tenant’s rental agreement, along with any documentation that will support their case. The cost and accepted payment methods for filing an eviction case will vary depending on the court, so the landlord will be responsible for making sure that they are prepared to pay the required fees (click here to see the Housing Court’s fee schedule).
Step 5 – Serve the Tenant
Once the eviction lawsuit has been filed, the landlord must serve copies of the Petition and Notice of Petition forms on the tenant(s) and any other person named in the eviction suit. As with the Notice to Quit, these documents cannot be served by the landlord. They must be served by a professional process server or another adult who has not already served on behalf of the landlord five (5) times in one (1) year. Furthermore, they must be served between five (5) and twelve (12) days before the hearing date. The Notice of Petition states when the tenant must appear in court to contest the landlord’s Petition with an Answer. The tenant’s Answer can be given verbally in court, or it can be written and sent to the court at least three (3) days before the scheduled hearing date.
New York City Tenant Forms
Tenant Forms Packet for Outside New York City
Step 6 – File Affidavit of Service
After serving the petition forms to the tenant, the “Affidavit of Service” or “Affidavit of Substitute or Conspicuous Place Service” (if service was not performed in-person) must be filled out and signed in front of a notary. The landlord will need to file the completed affidavit with the Clerk of Court.
Forms for Outside New York City
Step 7 – Attend Hearing
Both parties must present themselves at the court on the date and time stated in the petition. If the tenant isn’t present, the Judge will issue a default judgment against them. If the landlord does not attend the hearing, the case will be dismissed outright. On the date of the hearing, the Judge may try to settle the case before holding an actual trial. The Judge will either issue a Judgment for Possession and payment of the amount of rent owed or they will dismiss the case.
Form for Outside New York City
Step 8 – Attend Second Hearing (if Applicable)
After the trial has ended, the landlord or tenant can file an Appeal to the Judge’s decision; however, it should be noted that the appeals process is complicated and typically requires the assistance of an attorney. If a second hearing is called, both parties must present themselves on the scheduled date and, in the same manner, the Judge will issue a judgment or dismiss the case.
Step 9 – Removal of the Tenant
If the tenant continues to be non-compliant, the landlord can obtain a Warrant of Eviction to have the tenant removed. The eviction can only be performed by a constable, marshal, or sheriff; never by the landlord. The Clerk of Court will provide the landlord with the contact information of the person(s) authorized to perform evictions in the area. After receiving a warrant, the officer will serve a Notice of Eviction on the tenant. Within four (4) to six (6) business days from the date of service, the officer will be authorized to remove the tenant from the property. The landlord will be charged a fee for this service.
Form for Outside New York City
Step 10 – Store Tenant’s Property
Any property that the tenant leaves behind after being evicted should be stored by the landlord for up to thirty (30) days. The landlord must make an inventory of the tenant’s personal property and notify them that they will have thirty (30) days to claim it. After the indicated period has passed, the landlord may dispose of the tenant’s property or make a public sale. Any money owed by the tenant may be taken from the sale profits with the surplus profits kept in case the tenant tries to lay claim to them.