To start the California eviction process you will need to and mail a 3 Day Notice to Pay Rent or Quit. This gives the tenant three days to pay what is owed in rent. The landlord cannot include any late charges on the notice, only rent due. Once the 3 Day Notice is served the landlord must wait a full 3 days before filing the unlawful detainer. If the landlord wants to proceed with legal action it is important not to accept any form of partial payment during this time as this will restart the 3 day window for the tenant. Use the chart below to identify when the 3 Day Notice expires and when the landlord can proceed with the unlawful detainer.
|Day Served||Notice Expires at Midnight On|
Be aware that the 3 Day Notice cannot expire on a weekend day. After the 3 days are up the landlord can proceed with the unlawful detainer. Also remember that you will need to fill out a Proof of Service of 3 Day Notice to Pay Rent or Quit.
You may already be worried because you have no idea where to get a 3 Day Notice form or how to properly fill one out or what a Proof of Service form is. No need to worry because the California Landlord’s Law Book – Evictions has all the forms and excellent instructions on how to fill one out.
After the 3 Day Notice has been posted and the tenant does not pay, you can process and file an Unlawful Detainer suit against the tenant.