New Jersey eviction notices are used by landlords to give their tenants notice that their rental agreement will be terminated and they will be evicted if they do not vacate premises. The document states the landlord’s justification for terminating the lease and, in most cases, gives the tenant a notice period in which they can move out. Landlords have the right to terminate a tenancy if the tenant fails to pay their rent on time, breaks the terms of their lease, damages the property, or engages in illegal activity. When terminating a month-to-month agreement, the landlord doesn’t need to provide the tenant with any justification for ending their arrangement.
Immediate Notice to Quit for Non-Payment – If a tenant’s rent is overdue, the landlord can cancel their lease without notice (unless the landlord has accepted late rent from the tenant in the past). The notice gives the tenant the opportunity to quit the premises before an eviction lawsuit is filed against them.
1-Month Notice to Quit for Non-Compliance – Allows a landlord to terminate a tenant’s lease with one (1) month’s notice for non-compliance with the terms of their lease or for habitually late rent.
3-Day Notice to Quit for Non-Compliance – Gives a tenant three (3) days to vacate the property for repeated lease violations that require the landlord’s re-entry or disturbing the peace of their neighbors.
1-Month Notice to Terminate Month-to-Month Tenancy – Tenants and landlords can use this document to end a month-to-month rental agreement with one (1) month’s notice.
3-Day Notice to Quit for Property Damage – Gives a tenant three (3) days’ notice to quit the property for damaging the landlord’s property.
3-Day Notice to Quit for Illegal Activity – Terminates a tenant’s lease with three (3) days’ notice for engaging in illegal activity on the premises.
Notice to Cease – Informs a tenant that they have broken the terms of their lease and orders them to stop or remedy their violation.
- Grace Period (§ 2a-42-6.1): Five (5) Days
- Non-Payment of Rent (§ 2A:18-61.2(3) and § 2A:18-53(b)): No notice required unless the landlord habitually accepted late rent.
- Lease Non-Compliance (§ 2A:18-61.2(3)(a and b) and § 2A:18-53(c)(1, 3, and 4)): One (1) Month or Three (3) Days
- Periodic Tenancy Termination (§ 2A: 18-56(b)): One (1) Month
- Damage to the Property (§ 2A:18-53(c)(2) and § 2A:18-61.2(3)(a)): Three (3) Days
- Illegal Activity (§ 2A:18-61.2(3)(a)): Three (3) Days
The eviction process in New Jersey varies depending on the justification for the tenant’s removal. In most cases, a notice to quit is required that informs the tenant that their lease will be canceled and gives them a time limit to move out before the landlord has them evicted. However, if the tenant hasn’t paid their rent on time, the landlord can terminate the tenant’s lease and evict them without notice (unless they have habitually accepted late rent from the tenant). After being served a notice to quit, the tenant must move out before the notice expires or legal action may be taken against them for the landlord to reclaim their property.
Step 1 – Notice to Cease
If the tenant breaks the terms of their lease, frequently pays rent late, or causes a disturbance to neighbors, the landlord must serve them with a Notice to Cease. The notice orders the tenant to stop their non-compliance and, in certain cases, will give them a time frame to fix their violation. A Notice to Cease is not required if the landlord is terminating a month-to-month rental agreement or if the tenant has failed to pay their rent (for a first offense), damaged the property, or engaged in illegal activity.
Step 2 – Complete and Serve Notice to Quit
If a tenant does not stop their non-compliance, or in instances where such notice is not required (as described above), the landlord can serve them with a notice to quit. The notice to quit informs the tenant that their rental agreement will be terminated and gives them a date by which they must move out to avoid being evicted.
- Immediate Notice to Quit for Non-Payment
- 1-Month Notice to Quit for Non-Compliance
- 3-Day Notice to Quit for Non-Compliance
- 1-Month Notice to Terminate Month-to-Month Tenancy
- 3-Day Notice to Quit for Property Damage
- 3-Day Notice to Quit for Illegal Activity
The landlord must deliver the notice by certified mail or personally serve it on the tenant (or family member who is over fourteen (14) years of age).
Step 3 – File Complaint and Summons
To begin legal action against the tenant, the landlord will need to file a Verified Complaint and Summons with the clerk of the Special Civil Part Office in the county where the property is located. The clerk will charge the landlord a fee to file the documents and, after setting a hearing date, will arrange for the Complaint and Summons to be served on the tenant.
Step 4 – Attend Hearing
On the date of the hearing, both parties must arrive at the court hearing on-time or the case may be dismissed. If the tenant doesn’t appear, a default judgment will likely be entered against them. The landlord and tenant will both need to present evidence to support their case. After considering the evidence, the judge will reach a verdict. A decision in the landlord’s favor will result in them being granted a Judgment for Possession to reclaim their property. If the tenant wins, the case will be dismissed and they will be able to continue their lease.
Step 5 – Warrant for Possession
After receiving a judgment in their favor, the landlord can request a Warrant for Possession from the clerk of the court to have the tenant evicted. The tenant has three (3) days from the date that the Warrant is issued to vacate the premises. If the tenant does not leave the property within three (3) days, the landlord can arrange for a Court Officer to forcibly remove the tenant.
- Verified Complaint Landlord/Tenant (Appendix XI-X)
- Tenancy Summons and Return of Service (Appendix XI-B)