Sheriff Dewey Jones and the Civil Division of his Office are pleased to provide this document to you as a public service. Certainly, the law applicable to Landlord/Tenant relations is complex and detailed. This document is an attempt to provide the Landlord with the procedures whereby an eviction process may be instituted and to provide the Tenant with knowledge of how this process works. Our goal is to insure a smooth and legal procedure where parties are aware of the duties of this Office in the enforcement of the law. Neither the Sheriff, nor the Clerk of Court, nor the Magistrates may give you legal advice on this or any other legal matter. The law prohibits anyone from practicing law without a license. If you have legal questions, please contact an attorney.
STEP 1: Demand the tenant move out, either in person or in writing. If after ten (10) days they fail or refuse to move out, go to Clerk of Court’s Office and ask Clerk for the forms for evictions, which are called MAGISTRATE’S SUMMONS FOR SUMMARY EJECTMENTS. You will need to complete the forms and all copies there. There is a fee for the court costs as well as a service fee (per defendant) that has to be paid. The summons will be delivered to the Sheriff’s Office for service.
STEP 2: Once delivered to the Sheriff’s Office, the summons will be processed and given to a Deputy to be served. The Court date must be set not more than (10) days from the issuance of the summons. The Deputy must mail a copy of the summons to each defendant with an envelope addressed, stamped and provided by the Plaintiff (you). The Deputy will serve the summons one of three ways:
(1) BY PERSONALLY DELIVERING THE SUMMONS TO THE DEFENDANT(S);
(2) BY LEAVING A COPY WITH SOMEONE WHO RESIDES AT THE RESIDENCE WHO IS AT LEAST 15 YEARS OF AGE;
(3) BY POSTING A COPY OF THE SUMMONS ON THE DOOR OF THE RESIDENCE (AFTER MAKING AT LEAST ONE ATTEMPT TO SERVE BY THE FIRST TWO METHODS).
Note: If method 3 is used the landlord may not be able to recover money owed to them. The summons must be served and returned to the Clerk’s Office prior to the court date.