An Alabama eviction notice is a document served on a tenant who has failed to comply with their lease agreement and must vacate the premises. Landlords must give tenants a certain number of days to cure the violation they have caused to avoid their lease being terminated. In Alabama, a 7-day notice period is provided to tenants to either pay overdue rent or remedy the breach of contract before the lease is terminated. If the tenant has not fixed the problem or moved out of the property after the notice period, the landlord has a legal right to start an eviction suit against them.
7-Day Notice to Quit for Non-Payment – Used by a landlord to notify a tenant they have not paid rent on time. There is no rent grace period in Alabama; therefore, the landlord may issue this notice the day after rent is due.
7-Day Notice to Quit for Non-Compliance – Sent to a tenant when the lease has been violated in any manner except late rent. If the tenant does not fix the issue, they will be obligated to vacate the premises within seven (7) business days.
7-Day Notice to Quit for Illegal Activity – If a tenant commits an illegal act on the property, this notice shall be used to inform them that they have seven (7) days to vacate.
30-Day Notice to Terminate Month-to-Month Lease – Used by a landlord or tenant to notify the other party that they intend on terminating a lease agreement by providing thirty (30) days’ notice.
- Grace Period: Not mentioned in state statutes.
- Non-Payment of Rent (§ 35-9A-421(b)): Seven (7) Days
- Lease Non-Compliance (§ 35-9A-421(a)): Seven (7) Days
- Periodic Tenancy Termination (§ 35-9A-441(b)): Thirty (30) Days
- Illegal Activity (§ 35-9A-421(d)) – Seven (7) Days
- Intentional Damage to the Property: Not mentioned in state statutes.
Evicting a tenant in Alabama requires giving notice to the tenant and, after their refusal to acknowledge the notice, submit forms to the local Circuit Court. Due to the potentially lengthy eviction process, landlords should begin the eviction process as soon as possible following the infraction.
Step 1 – Download a Notice
The tenant must be notified in writing that they have violated their lease agreement before the landlord can evict them. The landlord must give the tenant the opportunity to cure the violation they have committed before terminating the lease and demanding repossession of the property. Download and complete one of the following notices to quit:
- 7-Day Notice to Pay or Quit (for unpaid rent)
- 7-Day Notice to Comply or Quit (lease violations)
- 7-Day Notice to Quit for Illegal Activity
- 30-Day Month-to-Month Termination Letter
Step 2 – Deliver the Notice
The completed form can be mailed or given to the tenant by hand. If the landlord intends to mail the document, it is recommended that they use certified mail, which provides the landlord with proof that the tenant received the notice. The landlord must give the tenant time to cure the violation or move out before proceeding to the next step, which is to commence an eviction action against the tenant for not adhering to the demands of the notice to quit.
Step 3 – File Statement of Claim
Once the notice period has ended, the landlord can download and complete the Statement of Claim (Eviction/Unlawful Detainer) form (also referred to as form C-59), which contains a complaint section and a summons section. The Statement of Claim must be filed with their local Judicial Circuit Court. A fee of $256 (+ $10 for each additional defendant) will be charged to the landlord. Once the statement of claim has been filed, the tenant must receive a copy. Once they receive the necessary documentation, they have seven (7) days to respond using the Answer to Landlord’s Claim (Form PS-01). The clerk will notify both parties of the date and time of the hearing.
Step 4 – Attend Hearing
On the day of the hearing, a judge will hear arguments from both the landlord and tenant and make a decision based on testimony and evidence provided by the parties. If the landlord wins, the judge will give the tenant a timeframe in which they need to move out of the property.
Step 5 – Writ of Possession
If, after the allotted timeframe, the tenant has failed to move out of the property, the landlord will need to obtain a writ of possession from the judge, which permits the landlord to employ the sheriff’s office to forcibly remove the tenant.
- Statement of Claim – Eviction/Unlawful Detainer (Form C-59)
- Signing: Plaintiff or Plaintiff’s Attorney
- Answer to Landlords Claim (Form PS-01)
- Signing: Defendant