For information and resources for tenants, please visit www.phillytenant.org.
Your landlord has to go to court to evict you. Here is the process:
Step 1: Eviction Notice
You may receive an eviction notice (also called a Lease Termination Notice or Notice to Quit) telling you when your landlord wants you to move out. You do not have to move out by that date. Your landlord must take you to court in order to evict you.
Step 2: Court Complaint
If you do not move out, the landlord can file an Eviction Complaint against you in Municipal Court. The Complaint should state the reason your landlord is evicting you and the date/time of the court hearing. The Complaint should be sent to you by mail, attached to your door or hand delivered.
Step 3: Hearing
Eviction hearings are in Municipal Court at 1339 Chestnut St, 6th Floor. You must arrive on time to court, or you will likely lose. At the hearing you can have a hearing in front of a judge or sign a judgment by agreement.
Step 4: Appeal (if applicable)
If you lose at the hearing, you will have 10 calendar days to file an appeal in the Court of Common Pleas, City Hall, Room 296. The appeal stops an eviction from taking place until the court rules on the case, as long as you pay ongoing rent to the court.
Step 5. Eviction
If you lose in court and do not appeal or if break your agreement, your landlord can legally evict you. Your landlord must file eviction papers with the court–writ of possession and alias writ of possession. The landlord tenant officer can evict you 21 days after the judgment.
More detailed information about the eviction process can be found in the attached PDF.