How to Evict Someone in Arizona

By George Lawrence
Eviction actions in Arizona are called
arizona state flag image by JJAVA from

Evictions in Arizona are governed by Arizona's Landlord and Tenant Act, according to The type of lawsuit is called a "special detainer" action or a "forcible detainer" action. Arizona landlords can file a special detainer action only after the landlord has first given the tenant a chance to either pay the past-due back rent or fix the problem that brought about the eviction, such as removing a pet kept in violation of the lease.

Deliver a "notice" letter to the tenant. Arizona law requires the landlord to notify the tenant that the landlord is considering an eviction action if the tenant does not comply with the terms of the lease. If the landlord is seeking an eviction because the tenant has not paid rent, the notice must give the tenant five days to pay the rent. If it is for another reason, such as to remove trash or debris from the apartment, the tenant has 10 days to comply. The notice must state what the tenant must do and that if the tenant fails to do what is required, eviction procedures will be initiated.

Visit the Arizona Justice Court in the precinct where the lease-property is located and ask for a forcible detainer complaint form, a summons and a certificate of service form.

Fill out the forcible detainer complaint and the summons form. The forms are self-explanatory and simply require the landlord to enter information into blanks on the form. Fill out only the top half of the summons form; the deputy clerk will fill out the rest.

Deliver a copy of the summons and the complaint to the tenant. Fill out the certificate of service form stating how the landlord delivered the forms to the tenant. Hand delivery is a form of service, for example.

File the complaint and proof of service with the Arizona Justice Court. Pay the required filing fee (as of 2010, it was $36, according to Bring a copy of the lease, a copy of the notice the landlord gave the tenant, proof of service and delivery of the complaint and notice, and any records proving the tenant should be evicted, such as business records showing the tenant has not paid rent.

Argue the case in court on the landlord's hearing date. The court will generally grant the eviction if the landlord proves the facts in the complaint and if the tenant does not have a valid defense.

Obtain a judgment against the tenant.

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