These instructions apply to all notices served to tenants, including serving eviction notices, three day pay or vacate notices, and notices to terminate tenancy to tenants in Seattle, Tacoma, and other Washington cities. The most common types of notices are the Three-Day Notice to Pay or Vacate, the Ten-Day Notice to Comply or Vacate, and the Twenty-Day Notice to Terminate Tenancy. It’s very important that these notices are served properly to avoid any delay or having to restart the eviction process.
Prior to beginning the eviction process, you must serve one copy for each adult tenant. If there are multiple adults on the property, you need to serve one copy per occupant plus an extra for “all other occupants.”
In Washington State, there are three acceptable means to serve a Notice on a tenant:
- Delivering a copy personally to the tenant in their hands,
- Substitute service on another person of suitable age and discretion if the tenant is unavailable AND also mail a copy to each tenant (plus one copy addressed to “all other occupants”) by first class mail, OR
- If neither the tenant nor a person of suitable age and discretion is present then placing a copy of the Notice in a noticeable (conspicuous) place on the property AND mailing a copy to each tenant (plus one copy addressed to “all other occupants”) by first class mail.
The best way to serve the eviction notice, three day pay or vacate notice, or 20 day notice to terminate tenancy, is personal service—knocking on the door of the unit and hand delivering the appropriate number of copies to the tenant.
If nobody answers the door, you can post the Notices in a conspicuous (meaning visible place where anyone walking by could see it), and mail a copy to each tenant. You should not fold the notice, place it in an envelope, or slide it under the door.
Dimension Law Group provides these notices to landlords for free on our Landlord Library website at www.dimensionlaw.com/landlord-library/.
To find out more about the eviction process, and to talk with experience eviction attorneys in the Seattle area, contact Dimension Law Group today.
Renton Office: 1900 S Puget Drive, Suite #203, Renton, WA 98055
Seattle Office: 1200 Westlake Ave N, Suite #1006, Seattle, WA 98109