My Landlord Just Gave Me a 10-Day Notice to Comply or Vacate

Please Note

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Yes, if you rent the place where you live and you just got a 10-Day Notice to Comply or Vacate from your landlord.


No, if you own the mobile home you live in, and rent the lot. Instead, read My manufactured/mobile home park landlord just gave me a 20-Day Notice to Pay or Vacate and talk to a lawyer right away. Contact information is below.


  • What this notice is
  • What to do if you get this notice from your landlord
  • Where to get legal help


It is a warning from your landlord. A landlord who believes you have broken (violated) a major (substantial) rule in your lease, other than not paying rent, may give you this type of notice.  


The notice should tell you exactly which important (“material”) part of the rental agreement the landlord believes you are breaking. You then have 10 days from the date you got the notice to stop breaking the rules.

Example: Your lease states that people who are not listed on the lease cannot stay with you for more than one week. Your landlord might give you a 10-Day Notice, stating you have “unauthorized occupants.” You then have 10 days for your unauthorized guest to leave, or your landlord may file an eviction lawsuit against you.

The landlord must win an eviction lawsuit against you and get a judge to sign an order directing the sheriff to evict you.

If you fix the problem within 10 days of getting the notice, your landlord should stop the eviction process.

A landlord may also give you a 10-Day Notice if you substantially violate a material requirement of a government (subsidized) housing program. If this happens to you, you may have more rights that we don’t describe here. Read HUD Housing Evictions and/or Evictions from Public Housing (Housing Owned by a Housing Authority) to learn more.



Write the landlord a letter saying you disagree with (dispute) the 10-Day Notice. Keep a copy of your letter. Try to get legal help. Contact information is below.

The landlord (or their employee or another adult) can “personally serve” you at home by handing the notice to you. The landlord can also hand it to another adult or older teenager who lives with you. The landlord can also tape it on your door, but then they must also mail a copy to you.


A 10-Day Notice that is by text, voicemail, email or in person is not a proper notice. It does not start the eviction process.

*The notice does not have to be notarized.


No. Washington law does not let landlords evict tenants without following the proper court eviction process. The landlord must give you a proper written “termination” notice before the landlord can start an eviction lawsuit. The 10-day Notice to Comply or Vacate is one type of termination notice.


The landlord must also give you official court papers called a “Summons” and “Complaint.” These papers may require you to send a response to your landlord or their lawyer. The landlord needs to have these documents delivered to you if your landlord wants to have the case heard in court.

If you do get court documents, call the Eviction Defense Screening Line at 1-855-657-8387.


If you get four valid, properly served 10-Day Notices to Comply or Vacate within one year, the landlord can end your tenancy with a 60-Day Notice to Terminate before the end of the fixed term or period. The notices must all be about different incidents.


Visit Northwest Justice Project to find out how to get legal help. 




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Last Review and Update: Oct 26, 2021
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