A reference of Vermont Eviction Laws, and steps of the Vermont eviction process for landlords and renters, updated 2021.
- What are the reasons that landlords can evict tenants under Vermont eviction laws?
- Nonpayment of rent (Vt. Stat. Ann. tit. 9 § 4467(a))
- Illegal activity (Vt. Stat. Ann. tit. 9 § 4467(b))
- Non-compliance with the lease agreement (Vt. Stat. Ann. tit. 9 § 4467(b))
- Tenant remains in possession of the rental unit after the lease term without the owner’s permission (Vt. Stat. Ann. tit. 9 § 4467(c))
- What notice do Vermont eviction laws require that landlords provide tenants before starting the eviction process?
- For evictions based on non-payment of rent, the landlord must provide a 7-day notice. (Vt. Stat. Ann. tit. 9 § 4467(a)).
- For evictions based on criminal activity, illegal drug activity, or acts of violence that threaten the health or safety of other residents, the landlord must provide a 14-day notice. (Vt. Stat. Ann. tit. 9 § 4467(b)).
- For evictions based on non-compliance with the lease agreement, the landlord must provide a 30-day notice. (Vt. Stat. Ann. tit. 9 § 4467(b)).
- For evictions based on remaining in possession of the rental unit beyond the period of the lease without the owner’s permission, the landlord must provide a specific notice based on how long the tenant has resided at the property. For tenants who have lived on the property for two years or less, the landlord must provide a 60-day notice. For tenants who have lived on the property for more than two years, the landlord must provide a 90-day notice. For a week-to-week tenancy, the landlord must provide a 7-day notice. of 30-days for a month-to-month tenancy. (Vt. Stat. Ann. tit. 9 § 4467(c)).
- Do Vermont eviction laws allow landlords to use “self-help eviction” methods, such as locking a tenant out of the rental unit or shutting off the utilities?
- No. Vermont law prohibits self-help measures, including denying the tenant access to the rental unit or their property or interrupting essential services. A tenant can recover damages, court costs and attorney fees against a landlord who resorts to self-help measures. (Vt. Stat. Ann. tit. 9 § 4467(c)).
Vermont Eviction Process: Step-by-Step
The eviction process in Vermont involves the following five steps:
- The landlord serves the eviction notice. The landlord must deliver the appropriate eviction notice to the tenant that says why they are being evicted, what they can do, if anything, to cure the lease violation, and the date when the eviction will become effective.
- The landlord files an eviction lawsuit. If the tenant fails to move out after receiving the eviction notice, the landlord can begin the official eviction process in Vermont by filing an eviction action in the circuit court in the county where the rental property is located. The landlord must also pay a filing fee, which includes the cost of serving the complaint and summons on the defendant.
- Tenant answers. The tenant has 21 days after being served with the complaint to file a written answer.
- The parties attend the hearing. The court schedules a hearing on the eviction, and the parties attend it. If the tenant fails to respond to the complaint and summons or the court rules in the landlord’s favor, it will issue an eviction order to the landlord. The eviction order gives the tenant a specific amount of time to vacate the property.
- The landlord requests help from the sheriff. If the tenant remains in possession of the rental property after the time specified in the eviction order, the landlord can request help from the sheriff’s office to enforce the eviction order.