As a Landlord, before you can initiate an eviction process under Oklahoma law, you must serve a written notice to the Tenant, and the service of notice must be done properly, as specified under the Residential Landlord and Tenant Act. Depending on the facts of your case, the type of notice that you are required to serve on the Tenant will vary. Sometimes it can be confusing as to what notice is required and what is not, which is why I wrote this article to clarify the various types of eviction notices in Oklahoma, and the correct way to serve them.

My name is Vivid Niroula, and I am a Landlord Attorney based in Oklahoma City. Our firm helps Landlords in Oklahoma, Cleveland, and Grady County with eviction proceedings; we take care of everything from serving the notice and attending the hearing to the filing of the Sheriff’s writ. We move swiftly in these matters so you can get the person out of the property, and get the house rent ready so you can get back to generating cash flow. You can reach us by calling our office at (405) 456-9250 or by filling out the Contact Us Form.

Under Oklahoma law, as a Landlord, you are required to serve a notice on the Tenant before you may file an eviction lawsuit in the court, and generally speaking, there are four types of eviction notices: (1) a 5-day notice to quit, (2) a 30-day notice to quit, (3) a 15-day notice to comply, (4) an immediate notice to quit.

What is a 5-day notice to quit in Oklahoma?

A Landlord is required to serve a 5-day notice to quit (for non-payment) on a Tenant if he or she has fallen behind on the rent and is unwilling or unable to pay the rent when it is due, before you may start the eviction process. A 5-day notice is applicable to all types of tenancy – this means that you may serve a 5-day notice to quit for non-payment of rent regardless of whether the tenancy is a month-to-month, at-will, or a fixed term. For example, if you enter into a lease contract that is to expire in a year, but 2 months into the lease the Tenant stops making rent payments, you may serve a 5-day notice on the Tenant and demand the past due payment. If the Tenant pays the past due amount within the 5 days, then the tenancy survives, however, if the Tenant fails to pay the amount during the 5 days, you may initiate an eviction action.

What is a 30-day notice to quit in Oklahoma?

A landlord is required to serve a 30-day notice to quit on a Tenant in order to legally terminate a month-to-month or a tenancy at will, before you may start the eviction process. For example, if you verbally agree to let a friend live on one of your properties, where he or she agreed to pay rent every month, a month-to-month tenancy exists, and you must serve a 30-day notice to quit to legally terminate such a tenancy. Another type of tenancy that requires a 30-day notice is a tenancy at will, under which either the Landlord or the Tenant may terminate the tenancy at any time – however, under Oklahoma Landlord Tenant Act, you as an at-will Landlord must serve a 30-day notice to a Tenant. After you serve a 30-day notice on a Tenant, you must wait for 30 days before you may file an eviction action.

What is a 15-day notice to comply in Oklahoma?

A 15-day notice to comply is applicable when a Tenant fails to comply with a lease term, as agreed upon at the time of formation of the lease or as listed on the lease term. In essence, this notice lets the Tenant know that he or she is in non-compliance with a lease term, and therefore you demand that he or she remedy the violation within 10 days, otherwise the tenancy will terminate in 15 days. For example, if the Tenant plays extremely loud music in violation of the lease term, you may serve him with a 15-day notice demanding he turn the music down. If the violation continues and is not remedied within 10 days from the receipt of the notice, the rental agreement will terminate in 15 days. However, if the Tenant stops playing loud music within 10 days, the tenancy is not terminated for a lease term violation, and you may not file an eviction action. But if he ignores the notice of the violation, and keeps playing extremely loud music past the 10 days, the tenancy will terminate after 15 days, and you may initiate eviction proceedings at that point.

What is an immediate notice to quit in Oklahoma?

There are a few instances where an Oklahoma Landlord is not required to serve either a 5-day, 30-day, or 15-day notice, and may immediately proceed with an eviction action. However, it’s a good practice to serve a notice with a demand to quit the premises before you file an eviction lawsuit. One such instance is where non-compliance with the rental terms causes or threatens to cause irremediable harm to the premises or any other person. If the harm is not remedied after the Tenant knows about it, you may immediately terminate the rental agreement by filing an eviction action. Another situation where a notice is not required to initiate an eviction action is when you are dealing with a holdover Tenant. If a Tenant continues living in the property after the expiration of the lease terms without your permission, he or she is a holdover tenant, and you may immediately bring an action for possession and damages – no notice is required, however, it’s always a good practice to serve a written notice on the Tenant before filing the eviction action.

How to serve an eviction notice in Oklahoma?

As a Landlord, not only you must serve the correct notice on the Tenant before you may initiate eviction proceedings, you must follow the law as to how the notice is served. Under the Oklahoma Residential Landlord and Tenant Act, there are three correct ways you may serve an eviction on the Tenant: (1) in-person service on the Tenant, (2) in-person service on a family member who is at least 12 years old, and resides with the Tenant, or (3) if personal service unavailable…then, by posting a written notice on the property AND mailing the notice to the Tenant by certified mail. It’s important to note that personal service is required if you are suing the Tenant for monetary damages in addition to the possession of the property. But if you are suing the Tenant just for possession, any one of the above three service methods is proper. After you properly serve the applicable notices, you must wait the requisite period before you may file a Forcible Entry and Detainer (FED) action, also called the eviction action.