How do I evict someone?
There are four steps: written notice, filing court paperwork (FED), court appearance, and actual eviction date. This process usually takes around a month to complete. It is unlawful for a landlord to turn off utilities, change locks, or otherwise remove or restrict tenants from a residence before the complete eviction process has occurred. Please note that all Weld County Sheriff’s Office employees are prohibited by law from giving legal advice (C.R.S. 30-10-520). You should consult an attorney for legal advice. You may call 970-356-4015 x 3051 for the audio version of these steps or see our brochure *link to eviction brochure*.
Step One: Notice
The landlord must complete a written notice to the tenant such as a Demand for Compliance, Right to Possession, or Notice to Quit. This notice must state the landlord’s demand for possession of the property, the date/time that the tenants need to move out by (length of time depends on lease, etc. ask an attorney for legal advice), and must be signed by the landlord or his agent/attorney. The landlord may serve the notice on the tenant, other occupant, or a relative over the age of 18 living at the residence. If no one is present, the notice may be posted in a conspicuous place (i.e. front door). A copy of the notice is required for the next step.
Step Two: Summons in Forcible Entry and Detainer (FED)
If the tenants do not move out by the date specified in the written notice, the landlord must bring a copy of the notice to the Weld County Courts and file a Summons in Forcible Entry and Detainer. The FED is served on the tenants (now referred to as defendants). The documents may be served by the Sheriff’s Office, a private process server, or a person over the age of 18 and not a party to the action. Service on the defendant or a family member over the age of 18 must be made at least 7 calendar days prior to the court date. If service cannot be made in person by the deadline, the papers can be posted. You must also mail a copy of the FED to the defendant no later than the next day following your filing date.
Step Three: Court Hearing
If the court finds in favor of the plaintiff (landlord), a judgment will be entered for possession of the premises. The defendant (tenant) may file an answer contesting the claim. If personal service was made, the court may also award a money judgment. If the service was by posting, the money judgment may be obtained later through a separate action (i.e. small claims court), or a continuance to try to obtain personal service. If the court rules in favor of the defendant, he may be entitled to a judgment for his costs.
Step Four: Writ of Restitution
If the plaintiff is awarded the judgment and no appeal is filed, the court will issue the Writ of Restitution after 48 hours. If the tenants move out on their own during this period, the plaintiff does not have to obtain the Writ of Restitution. If/when the Writ of Restitution is brought to the Sheriff’s Office, a date and time will be scheduled for the deputy to do the eviction. Only a Sheriff’s Deputy can execute the Writ of Restitution (valid for 49 days). The deputy has the authority to reschedule an eviction. Prior to the eviction day a courtesy notice will be posted at the premises advising of the date of the eviction (we do not give the time for the safety of our deputy).
On the day of the eviction the plaintiff must provide sufficient bags and boxes, and physical labor to remove all belongings from the residence in approximately one hour (the deputy does not assist in the moving of property), or the eviction may be rescheduled. The local city code usually determines when the property must be removed from the sidewalk or right of way after the eviction. Locks can be changed after all belongings have been removed from the premises. Abandoned pets will be turned over to Animal Control for that jurisdiction. Abandoned vehicles are the responsibility of the property owner. *link to Landlord Eviction Guidelines*
Fees for Eviction Services:
Written Notice/Demand: $35 + mileage (additional defendants $10 each)
FED : $35 + mileage (additional defendants $10 each)
Writ of Restitution: $65 + mileage (additional defendants $10 each)