3 Day Notice to Pay Rent or Quit

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 ServedNotice Expires at Midnight On
MondayThursday
TuesdayFriday
WednesdayMonday
ThursdayMonday
FridayMonday
SaturdayTuesday
SundayWednesday

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.

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4 Comments

  1. Florida has a very similar process in which to evict a tenant, which is unique in that California and Florida are usually very different when it comes to procedural matters. Your chart is very helpful when it comes to the expiration dates for the 3 day eviction notice. A nice addition would be to include what dates California considers legal holidays as the eviction notice cannot expire on a legal holiday as well.

  2. what if this ‘tenant’ HAD a mgr contract w/ now deceased owner of property. property now is in probate and will be taken by bank. however, this ‘tenant’ is an ex convict and pays no rent. so how do i apply the three day pay or quit notice in this case? he is using bullying and intimidation of myself, legally disabled woman along w/ another disabled woman who rents here. He plays nice with the men who live here. but has now taken to leaving upstairs doors and windows wide open knowing im dying of three terminal diseases and the flu WILL kill me…he’s an ex convict who was in prison for intimidating a witness and he’s making my life a living hell….i am the oldest sibling, residing at the residence….he has to go…and he has drug dealing friends delivering him drugs weekly…what can i do to get him out of here? please help

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