Ohio landlords must comply with Ohio’s landlord and tenants laws codified in the Ohio Revised Code, Title 53, Chapter 21. The Ohio statutory codes require landlords to follow specific legal procedures to evict a tenant for breaching the lease agreement, failing to pay rent or refusing to leave after the lease agreement ends. The eviction procedure in Ohio begins with a three-day notice procedure.
The state of Ohio recognizes both written and oral lease agreements between landlords and tenants. However, landlords in Ohio cannot prematurely end a written lease agreement for unless the tenant doesn’t pay rent on time or the tenant breaches the agreement. Landlords who have oral agreements for weekly tenancies must provide tenants with seven days notice to vacate. Landlords with month-to-month agreements must provide a 30-day notice period.
Notice to Leave Premises
Landlords in Ohio must provide its tenants with a three-day notice to leave the premises. The Notice to Leave Premises is a written notice stating the landlord is requesting the tenant to leave the premises or risk a legal forced eviction. The landlord must serve the tenant with the written notice through certified mail, hand delivery or posting at the tenant’s rental unit.
Forcible Entry and Detainer Action
If the tenant does not pay the past-due rental amounts, the landlord legally chooses to refuse overdue rental payments or does not correct a violation of the residential lease agreement and does not voluntarily leave the premises, the landlord can file a legal Forcible Entry and Detainer Action. The landlord must serve the tenant with the detainer action and summons through personal service and by mailing it to the tenant’s legal address or rental unit if the tenant and landlord did not enter into a binding written lease agreement. The detainer action includes a hearing date for the eviction hearing. Landlords must provide tenants with at least seven days to prepare for the hearing.
If the landlord is successful in court or the tenant fails to appear, a judge will issue an order forcing eviction. This “Writ of Execution” provides tenants with 10 days to leave the premises voluntarily. If the tenant does not comply with the court’s order to leave, then the local sheriff or police officer can forcefully remove the tenants and the tenant’s property from the rental unit.
Illegal Eviction Procedures
Ohio landlords may not discontinue utility services, forcibly evict tenants by changing locks or threaten to proceed with these actions. Landlords must comply with Ohio’s notice and detainer action procedures to legally evict tenants. Additionally, landlords may not remove the tenant’s property from the rental unit unless the landlord obtains a written court order allowing the removal of personal items.
Since real estate laws frequently change, you should not use this information as a substitute for legal advice. Seek advice through an attorney licensed to practice law in your jurisdiction.
- Ohio Government: Ohio Revised Code: Chapter 1923 -- Forcible Entry and Detainer
- Ohio Government: Ohio Revised Code: Chapter 1923 – Summons and Service of Process
- Ohio Government: Ohio Revised Code: Chapter 1923 – Writ of Execution
- Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard University. "America's Rental Housing 2020," Page 9. Accessed March 20, 2020.
- Nolo. "State Laws on Landlord's Access to Rental Property." Accessed March 20, 2020.
- Nolo. "How Evictions Work: Rules for Landlords and Property Managers." Accessed March 20, 2020.
- U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. "Housing Discrimination Under the Fair Housing Act." Accessed March 20, 2020.
Jill Stimson has worked in various property management positions in Maryland and Delaware. Stimson worked for the top three property management companies in the commercial industry and focuses her career on property building logistics and tenant relationships. She holds a Juris Doctor and a Bachelor of Science in psychology.