Pennsylvania eviction law

5 Replies

@Jeanni Prescan as long as you can prove it was sent then anyway will work. I would do certified letter and post it personally. If you send it certified they may never pick it up so posting it assures they received it. Take a picture of it and note the date posted. I know a lot of landlords that just send certified mail so thats probably good enough.

@Jeanni Prescan and @Alex Deacon

Here's the relevant language in the statute:

(f) The notice provided for in this section may be served personally on the tenant, or by leaving the same at the principal building upon the premises, or by posting the same conspicuously on the leased premises.

So certified mail doesn't work under the statute. But you can combine them with the above methods to prove to the magistrate that you did send the notice. 

You can also require the tenant to waive such notices or amend the way you can provide the notice. But that needs to be in the lease. 

Sometimes the magistrates may ignore this procedural defect. But if the tenant ends up appealing to the Court of Common Pleas, the court may be forced to throw out the case because it might raise issues of subject matter jurisdiction. 

Disclaimer: While I’m an attorney licensed to practice in PA, I’m not your attorney. What I wrote above does not create an attorney/client relationship between us. I wrote the above for informational purposes. Do not rely on it for legal advice. Always consult with your attorney before you rely on the above information.

Thanks Chris!  Appreciate your reply.  My experience is they wont sign for certified mail. So I’ve decided to mail it with tracking and post it.  Better safe than sorry. 

I haven't done a ton of evictions because we have had a really low number of tenants who default, but in the last decade plus we've probably done about a dozen (or a little less) and almost every time the magistrates just ask if you've provided notice and you can say yes or no. The tenant has the option to deny they received it and then you will have to prove how. However, there are a few magistrates that I have learned (through my experience and others) that will specifically ask if the tenant was served or notice posted per the statue and if you say no they will make you start over by posting and then re-filing.

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