How long does the process take to remove someone from their apartment for non-payment of rent?

Asked on November 5, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Michigan


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

The answer will vary somewhat by state, since court procedures differ by state. Here is how long it would take in New Jersey, which is fairly representative:

1) You don't need to file a notice to quit (a/k/a eviction notice) when the issue is nonpayment of rent; you can go directly to instigating a summary disposses (eviction) action in court by filing a summons and complaint.

2) You would get a court date 3 - 5 weeks later.

3) At court, assuming the tenant either does not show or you win (e.g. you prove nonpayment), you will get a judgment of possession. You can file that the same day.

3) Three business days later, a warrant of removal should be issued and will be served by a court officer. However, if the court docket is crowded (lots of cases), this could take another 1 - 2, or even 3, weeks.

4) Three business days after the warrant of removal is served, the lockout will happen.

So, start to finish, it could be a short as a bit over a month, but could take more look 2 months (or more) depending on how busy the courts in your county are.

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