Tennessee 3 Day Notice To Vacate

Last Updated: March 11, 2024 by Roberto Valenzuela

A Tennessee 3 Day Notice To Vacate is a letter which complies with state legal requirements to begin eviction against a tenant for serious criminal activity on the premises, in places NOT governed by the state Uniform Residential Landlord and Tenant Act (URLTA). The tenant is not allowed an opportunity to take corrective action, and must move out within three (3) judicial days (i.e., not counting weekends and legal holidays) of receiving notice.

When To Use a Tennessee 3 Day Notice To Vacate

A 3 Day Notice To Vacate begins the eviction process in non-URLTA counties for the following tenant violations:

  • Endangering the health or safety of other persons
  • Engagement in drug-related criminal activity
  • Willful or intentional violent acts

Some types of Tennessee lease termination notice may allow different reasons for termination, or different notice periods. This may also apply to an eviction notice issued because of a lease or legal violation.

How To Write a Tennessee 3 Day Notice To Vacate

To help ensure the legal compliance of a Notice To Vacate:

  1. Use the full name of the receiving party, and address of record, if known
  2. Specify the termination date of the lease or tenancy
  3. Specify the basis for terminating the tenancy
  4. Fill in the full address of the rental premises
  5. Provide updated/current address and phone number information
  6. Print name and sign the notice
  7. Complete the certificate of service by indicating the date and method of notice delivery, along with printed name and signature

It is easy to lose an otherwise justified legal action because of improper notice. Check carefully to ensure enough time after notice is delivered, not when it’s sent.

How To Serve a Tennessee 3 Day Notice To Vacate

Tennessee landlords in a non-URLTA county do not have strict legal requirements for delivery of notice, so the terms of the lease will generally control questions of notice. In general, however, courts will expect similar standards as those which apply in URLTA jurisdictions:

  1. Hand delivery to the tenant
  2. Delivery by mail

Delivery of notice usually must be to the tenant’s last known address, or address of record.

Tennessee does allow limited cases where a non-written (e.g., verbal) lease termination notice may be legally valid. However, only dated, written notice with a certificate of service is proof positive of a proper and legal delivery.

URLTA versus Non-URLTA Counties in Tennessee

In Tennessee, depending on the county the property is located in, landlords and tenants are governed by one or both of the following sets of laws:

  • Tennessee Property Code Chapter 7 – applies in ALL Tennessee counties
  • Tennessee Property Code Chapter 28 – also called the Uniform Residential Landlord Tenant Act (URLTA), only applies in Tennessee counties with a population over 75,000 (as of 2010 Census data)

URLTA laws apply in addition to Chapter 7. Some laws in Chapter 7 do not apply to URLTA counties, and some URLTA laws override the basic Chapter 7 protections.

Tennesee’s URLTA applies in these counties:*:

  • Anderson
  • Blount
  • Bradley
  • Davidson
  • Greene
  • Hamilton
  • Knox
  • Madison
  • Maury
  • Montgomery
  • Rutherford
  • Sevier
  • Shelby
  • Sullivan
  • Sumner
  • Washington
  • Williamson
  • Wilson

* This list is subject to change in the future based on federal census data collected every ten years.