Cost of an Eviction in Pennsylvania

Cost of an Eviction in Pennsylvania

Last Updated: April 12, 2023 by Elizabeth Souza

The cost of an eviction in Pennsylvania for all filing, court, and service fees can vary heavily based on the claim amount. For cases filed in Magisterial District Court, the average cost of an eviction is $409.

These filing, court, and service fees do not include outside costs such as legal fees or post-eviction fees (i.e., locksmith fees, storage costs for a tenant’s abandoned property, cleaning service fees, repair costs, or advertising costs for a vacant dwelling unit).

1. Initial Court Filing Fee

In Pennsylvania, if the eviction notice expires and the tenant remains on the property without correcting the issue, the landlord may file an eviction lawsuit (“Unlawful Detainer”) with the court the following business day.

The filing fee for an initial Unlawful Detainer depends on the claim amount. The initial filing fee includes:

  • For claims $2,000 or less the filing fee is $84.
  • For claims more than $2,000, but less than $4,000, the filing fee is $102.50.
  • For claims more than $4,000 but not more than $12,000 the filing fee is $140.

2. Summons Service Fee

Once a Complaint is filed in Pennsylvania, the court will issue a Summons. The Summons is the tenant’s official notice of an eviction lawsuit and contains important information (i.e., when and where to appear in court). The landlord must arrange for a process server to deliver the Summons to the tenant.

The Summons service fee varies by process server and by county. For example, a sheriff in Montgomery County can charge $75 per tenant and in Fayette County, the sheriff can charge $150 per tenant. 

3.Writ of Possession Service & Execution Fee

In Pennsylvania, if the court rules in favor of the landlord, the court shall issue a Writ of Possession (also known as an Order for Possession) upon the landlord’s request. The writ is the tenant’s final notice to vacate the premises.

A writ server, sheriff, or constable must serve the order to the tenant. Service and execution fees vary by county, for example, in Chester County the fee for serving and enforcing a writ is $250.

4. Notice of Appeal Filing Fee

If either party chooses to file an Appeal, they may do so as long as the Notice of Appeal is filed within 10 calendar days of the judgment. The filing fee can vary by county, for example in Montgomery County, the filing fee is $294.50 and in Centre County, the filing fee is $166.75.