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Tips - Landlord's Five Days' Notice

By Mel Metts

Prepare the Five Day Notice in duplicate; keep the original and give the copy to the tenant.

Do not serve the five day notice on the day the rent is due. Wait until the rent is LATE (if the rent is due on the first of the month, you can serve on the second).

Allow five full days after you serve before filing the Forcible Complaint. If you serve the notice on the 2nd, you can file the Forcible on the 8th.

The language used in the Landlords Five Day Notice is defined in Illinois law. Some leases provide for the tenant to waive the notice requirement. If anybody has tried this and won in Judge Fritzí courtroom, Iíd like to hear from you.

Accepting Rent

If the tenant attempts to pay the rent in full during the five day period, you must accept it. You may also accept partial payment without voiding your eviction claim, provided your Five Day Notice is worded correctly. Our February speaker, Verella Osborne, says that some judges may not rule in your favor if you have accepted more than 50% of the rent that is due, although the Illinois law states otherwise. After the five days have passed, you may accept part or all of the rent owed and still continue with the eviction. I always bring the (uncashed) check or money order to court with me, so I can show it to the judge. The tenant will always claim that you cannot evict him since you accepted the rent, but you can. Itís money you were owed, right?

Affidavit of Service

Always leave the Affidavit of Service blank until AFTER the Five Day Notice has been served. Before you file the Forcible Complaint, you should complete the Affidavit of Service and have it notarized. Bring a PHOTOCOPY of the Five Day Notice (with Affidavit of Service) to the courthouse when you file the Forcible Complaint. Give it to the Clerk to include in the court file. Always keep the original for your file.

When filing the Forcible Complaint, bring a photocopy of the tenant's lease to be included in the court file as well.