Texas Eviction Laws

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Eviction Laws

Reasons for Eviction in Texas

  • Nonpayment of rent
  • Violation of lease terms
  • Illegal activity, such as:
    • Involvement in the creation, consumption, or distribution of illegal drugs
    • Subletting without approval
    • Theft, violence, or assault
  • End of the lease term

Notice to Vacate

The landlord must provide:

  • A 3-day notice to vacate for illegal activity. The police must be contacted if clear proof of illegal activity is found.
  • A 30-day notice to vacate for the end of a lease term.

Notice to Comply

The landlord must give a 3-day notice to pay or quit for nonpayment of rent.

However, landlords are required to give a 30-day notice to pay or quit if the property participates in certain federal programs or if the property owner has a federally-backed mortgage.

If the issue is a violation of lease terms, the landlord must give a 3-day notice to pay or quit.

Learn more about the eviction process, including the average cost.

Serving the Tenant

  • Notices to comply/vacate can be served by:
    • Hand-delivery to tenant
    • Mail (regular, registered, or certified mail with return receipt)
    • Posting on premises
  • The summons and complaint can be served by:
    • Personal service to the tenant by the Sheriff
    • If the Sheriff is not successful in serving tenants after two attempts, they may post the notice on the premises or slip the papers under the door.

Tenant Possessions

The landlord must first notify the tenant by certified mail to their last known address that their belongings will be held for 60 days and they will be disposed of if the tenant doesn’t claim the property.

The landlord may dispose of abandoned property after 60 days if the tenant does not claim it.

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Eviction Timeline

Below you’ll learn the average timeline for a complete eviction in Texas. This projected timeline could change based on the complexities of your specific case.

Typically, the Texas eviction process takes anywhere between four to eight weeks.

How to Start the Eviction Process in Texas?

Send the notice to vacate or comply and serve, mail, or post this documentation to the tenant. Once the notice period is up, an eviction suit can be filed. The tenant must be served within six days of the trial date.

The tenant must file an answer or show up in court to the first hearing date if they disagree with the claims. The trial is set between 10-21 days after the suit is filed.

At the hearing, a judgment will be issued. The tenants can appeal this decision. Once all deadlines have expired, a writ of possession will be issued. The writ is then sent to the Sheriff where an eviction is scheduled to move tenants out of the property if they haven’t already left.

How to Stop the Eviction Process in Texas?

File a motion to dismiss the case.

Note: The landlord is not required to accept late rent payments to stop an eviction caused by nonpayment of rent once the suit has been filed.

How Long is the Eviction Process in Texas?

The Texas eviction process can take anywhere from four to eight weeks.