Minnesota Eviction Process

Last Updated: October 26, 2021 by Elizabeth Souza

Timeline. Evicting a tenant in Minnesota can take around two weeks to three months, depending on the reason for the eviction. If tenants request a continuance, jury trial, or appeal, the process can take longer (read more).

Questions? To chat with a Minnesota eviction attorney, Click here

Introduction. Minnesota evictions are only valid if the landlord wins the court proceeding. There are rules and regulations a landlord must follow to begin the eviction process. Below are the individual steps of the eviction process in Minnesota.

Step 1: Notice is Posted

Landlords in Minnesota can begin the eviction process for several reasons, including:

  1. Nonpayment of Rent – Once rent is past due, written notice is not typically required prior to pursuing an eviction action with the court.
  2. Violation of Lease Terms / Rental Agreement – If a tenant violates a provision of a written lease/rental agreement, the landlord is not required to give the tenant the opportunity to correct the issue before moving forward with the eviction process.
  3. No Lease / End of Lease Term (Tenant at Will) – If there is no lease or the term of the lease has ended, the landlord does not need any additional reason to end the tenancy as long as proper notice is given.
  4. Illegal Activity – If a tenant or any other occupant of the rental unit is engaged in illegal activity, the written lease/rental agreement will determine how much notice (if any) is required.
NOTES
  • Retaliatory Evictions. It is illegal for a landlord to evict a tenant for complaining to the landlord or to the appropriate local or government agency regarding the property.
  • Evicting a Squatter. If the individual occupying the property did not have the permission of the landlord when initially moving in, does not have a lease (or verbal agreement) and has no history of paying rent, then a landlord/tenant relationship may not be established. As a result, the normal eviction process may not be applicable (read more).

Each possible ground for eviction has its own rules for how the process starts.

Eviction Process for Nonpayment of Rent

A landlord is allowed to evict a tenant for failing to pay rent on time.

According to Minnesota law, rent is considered late the day after it’s due; grace periods (if any) are addressed in the written lease/rental agreement.

For at-will tenants, once rent is past due, the landlord must provide a 14-Day Notice to Quit, if the landlord wants to file an eviction action with the court. This notice gives the tenant the option move out of the rental unit within 14 days to avoid eviction.

For all other tenancies, the landlord is not required to provide written notice prior to beginning an eviction action and may skip directly to Step 2 below.

If the at-will tenant remains in the rental unit after the notice period expires, the landlord may proceed with the eviction process.

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Eviction Process for Violation of Lease Terms / Rental Agreement

Icons  document     on iPropertyManagement.com A tenant can be evicted in Minnesota if they do not uphold their responsibilities and obligations under the terms of a written lease or rental agreement.

Minnesota landlords are not required to allow tenants to correct or “cure” a lease violation in these instances, but they must provide tenants with some type of notice prior to beginning an eviction action.

The amount of notice required depends on what is written into the lease or rental agreement.

Lease violations under this category could include a tenant damaging the rental property, having a pet when there is a no-pet policy, or having too many people residing in the rental unit without the landlord’s knowledge.

Note that illegal activity is not included in this category.

If the tenant remains on the property after the required notice period expires (if any), the landlord may proceed with the eviction process.

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Eviction Process for No Lease / End of Lease

In the state of Minnesota, if tenants “holdover,” or stay in the rental unit after the rental term has expired, then the landlord may be required to give tenants notice before evicting them. This can include tenants without a written lease and week-to-week and month-to-month tenants.

Often this type of eviction applies to tenants who are at the end of their lease and the landlord doesn’t want to renew.

The amount of time required in the notice depends on the type of tenancy.

  • Week-to-Week – If rent is paid on a week-to-week basis, a landlord must provide the tenant with a 7-Day Notice to Quit.
  • Month-to-Month – If rent is paid on a month-to-month basis, a landlord must provide the tenant with a 30-Day Notice to Quit.
  • All Other Tenancies– The amount of notice required must be equal to the time period between rent payments or three months,  whichever is shorter.

The landlord may not bring an eviction against the tenant where the lease was terminated more than three years before the beginning of the eviction action.

If the tenant remains on the property after the notice period expires, the landlord may proceed with the eviction process.

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Eviction Process for Illegal Activity

The amount of notice tenants must receive if they are being evicted for illegal activity depends on the terms of the lease. Minnesota landlords and tenants will need to review their written lease/rental agreement to determine how much notice is required.

In the state of Minnesota, illegal activity includes: 

  • Possession of controlled substances on the rental property.
  • Prostitution or prostitution-related activity on the rental premises.
  • Unlawful use or possession of a firearm on the rental property.
  • Storage of stolen property on the rental premises.

If the tenant remains on the property after the required notice period expires (if any), the landlord may proceed with the eviction process.

Generate an official Minnesota lease termination letter.


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Step 2: Complaint is Filed and Served

As the next step in the eviction process, Minnesota landlords must file a complaint in the appropriate court. Filing fees may vary, for example, in Douglas County, the filings fees cost $295.

The summons and complaint may be served on the tenant by anyone who is not part of the case within 24 hours of the date the summons was issued by the court for evictions due to illegal activity, or at least seven days prior to the hearing for all other types of evictions.

The summons and complaint may be served through one of the following methods:

  1. Giving a copy to the tenant in person;
  2. Leaving a copy with someone at the tenant’s residence; or
  3. Leaving a copy with someone at the rental unit (if different from the tenant’s residence).

Leaving a copy of the summons and complaint may only be done if the tenant cannot be found within the county where the eviction hearing is being held.

Clock   on iPropertyManagement.com24 hours to seven days, depending on the reason for the eviction.

Step 3: Court Hearing and Judgment

The hearing date depends on the type of eviction being filed.

For evictions due to illegal activity, the hearing will be held 5-7 days after the date the summons is issued by the court.

For all other evictions, the hearing will be held 7-14 days after the summons is issued by the court. If the court finds that the landlord expedited the hearing and it wasn’t due to illegal behavior or a nuisance endangering the safety of others, the landlord could be fined a civil penalty up to $500.

A six day continuance may be granted for either party; the tenant may request a continuance for up to three months if the tenant can prove they need the additional time to track down a crucial witness to testify before the court.

If the tenant fails to appear for the hearing, the judicial officer may issue a default judgment in favor of the landlord, meaning the tenant will need to move out of the rental unit.

If the judge rules in favor of the landlord, a writ of recovery will be issued immediately, and the eviction process will continue.

Either party may appeal within 15 days of the date the judgment was issued.

Clock   on iPropertyManagement.com5-14 days, depending on whether the eviction is for illegal activity or any other type of eviction. If tenants request a continuance or jury trial, the process will take longer.

Step 4: Writ of Recovery Is Issued

The writ of recovery is the tenant’s final notice to leave the rental unit and gives them the opportunity to remove their belongings before the sheriff, licensed police officer or community crime prevention licensed police officer returns to the property to forcibly remove the tenant.

If the court has ruled in the landlord’s favor, the writ of recovery will be issued immediately.

Clock   on iPropertyManagement.com Immediately. The writ of recovery will be issued immediately upon entry of a judgment in favor of the landlord.

Step 5: Possession of Property is Returned

Tenants will have 24 hours to move out of the rental unit once the writ of recovery has been posted or delivered.

Tenants who are not being evicted due to illegal activity may request a seven day stay of execution if moving out immediately would create a hardship.

For nonpayment of rent evictions, tenants can pay past-due rent, plus court costs, attorney fees, and any other costs ordered by the court at any time before they are forcibly removed from the rental unit and the eviction process will be stopped.

Clock   on iPropertyManagement.com24 hours. Tenants have 24 hours to move out of the rental unit once the writ has been posted; if a stay of execution is granted, this will add another seven days to the process.

Minnesota Eviction Process Timeline

Below is a summary of the aspects outside of the landlord’s control that dictate the amount of time it takes to evict a tenant in Minnesota. With These estimates can vary greatly, and some time periods may not include weekends or legal holidays.

  1. Initial Notice Period – Between 7 and 90 days, depending on the notice type and reason for eviction.
  2. Issuance/Service of Summons and Complaint – 24 hours to 7 days.
  3. Court Hearing and Ruling on the Eviction – 5-14 days, depending on the reason for the eviction; longer if a continuance/jury trial is requested.
  4. Issuance of Writ of Recovery – Immediately after the judgment in favor of the landlord.
  5. Return of Possession – 24 hours; longer if a stay is granted.
Questions? To chat with a Minnesota eviction attorney, Click here

Additional Information

Mobile Home Evictions. A tenant may be evicted from a mobile home park for the following reasons:

  • Nonpayment of Rent – Rent is considered late the day after it is due, the Park shall give a written 10 Days’ Notice before filing an eviction case.
  • Violation of Park Rules – The Park shall give a written 30 Days’ Notice of the date, time and rule violation. The tenant must comply by fixing or “curing” the violation or the eviction process will proceed. If the tenant fixes the violation but the same violation recurs within a six-month time frame of receiving the notice, the tenant may be asked to leave immediately.
  • Violation of State or Government Laws– The tenant fails to comply with the law, the park shall write a notice to the tenant and in detail inform them of the violation. The tenant shall begin to obey the law or face the eviction process. If the tenant fixes the violation but the same violation recurs within a six-month time frame of receiving the notice, the tenant may be asked to leave immediately.
  • Violation of Health or Safety Matters– The Park shall give the tenant a written 30 Days’ Notice to Quit.
  • Closing of the Mobile Park-The Park shall give a written nine-month notice before the park closes.
  • Park Temporarily Closing Due to Park Improvements-The Park shall give tenant’s a written 90 Days’ Notice before improvements begin. The notice shall include the improvements that will be made and an explanation of how it will benefit the tenants. Tenants have the right to move within the park (if their manufactured home fits within the zoning area).
  • False Information on Lease Application-The Park may evict tenants if they give false information on their application and must be done within one year of the date the tenant began to pay rent. 

Tenant’s Abandoned Property. If a tenant abandons their personal property, a landlord shall store and take care of the former tenant’s personal property. The landlord shall make reasonable efforts to notify the former tenant that the personal property will be sold if it is not claimed after 28 days. The landlord shall notify the tenant at least 14 days before the sale by written notice via first class and certified mail. The landlord may also post notice of the sale in a conspicuous place on the premises at least two weeks before the sale.  If the former tenant has not claimed their property after 28 days, the landlord may sell or dispose of the personal property. The landlord may sell the former tenant’s personal property to pay for the storage costs and expenses, if there are additional funds it shall be returned to the tenant upon written demand.

Flowchart of Minnesota Eviction Process

Minnesota Eviction Process Flowchart on iPropertyManagement.com

For additional questions about the eviction process in Minnesota, please refer to the official legislation, Minnesota Statutes §504B, for more information.

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