Landlord's 10-Day Notice to Quit due to Nonpayment of Rent in Indiana

Last Revised: January 22, 2023.

About this Form

This form letter is a legally-compliant 10-Day Notice to Quit due to nonpayment of rent in Indiana. It is professionally crafted to meet the requirements outlined in Indiana Code § 32-31-1-6 et seq. This notice letter serves as the first step in the eviction process, giving the tenant the option to either pay all past-due rent within ten days of receipt of this letter or vacate the premises. The form letter is a standard, unlocked Microsoft Word document, reusable, customizable to fit your specific situation, and can be downloaded immediately after purchase.
Rent Due Dates

Rent is typically due on the first day of each month unless otherwise specified in the lease agreement. Landlords are not legally obligated to provide a grace period before charging late fees or initiating eviction proceedings, even if the first of the month falls on a weekend or holiday. However, landlords and tenants may agree on different terms regarding rent due dates as long as these terms are written and included in the lease. For example, a landlord may agree not to charge late fees for a specified number of days after rent is due or to consider the following business day as the due date if the first of the month falls on a holiday. These terms are only valid if they are written in the lease, and both parties must abide by the terms.

Initiating the Eviction Process

If a tenant fails to pay rent and the landlord wishes to initiate the eviction process in Indiana, the landlord must first provide the tenant with a ten-day notice to quit. This notice must state that the tenant has ten days to either pay the rent or vacate the rental unit. If the tenant pays the rent within the ten-day period, the landlord cannot proceed with the eviction. However, if the tenant does not pay the rent or vacate the unit, the landlord can file an eviction lawsuit with the court (Indiana Code § 32-31-1-6).

Required Information in the Ten-Day Notice to Quit

The notice should include the following information:
  1. The date the notice was served on the tenant(s);
  2. The name(s) and address of the tenant(s);
  3. The total delinquent amount of rent due; and
  4. An affidavit of service specifying how the notice was given to the tenant.

Serving a Ten-Day Notice to Quit on the Tenant

A 10-day notice to vacate is ideally served directly to the tenant by hand delivery. If the tenant is absent at the time of attempted service, the landlord or authorized agent may serve the notice to an adult who resides at the rental property. The person delivering the notice must explain its contents to the person receiving it. If no adults are present at the property during the attempt to serve the notice, a copy of the notice may be affixed to a conspicuous part of the premises. This procedure is outlined in Indiana Code § 32-31-1-9.

Tenant Options

Upon receipt of a ten-day notice, the tenant has several options:

  1. Pay the rent in full within the ten-day period. If this payment is made, the landlord may not proceed with eviction.
  2. Vacate the rental unit. Even if the rent remains unpaid, the landlord may still choose to pursue legal action for the unpaid rent.
  3. Refrain from both paying the rent or vacating the rental unit. In this scenario, the landlord may proceed with the eviction process through the court at the end of the ten-day period. The tenant should be prepared to explain its valid defenses at an eviction hearing.

Initiating an Eviction Lawsuit

To initiate an eviction lawsuit in Indiana, the landlord must file a summons and complaint with the trial court in the county where the rental unit is located. The court will then schedule a hearing, and the tenant will receive a copy of the filed paperwork. During the hearing, a judge will hear from both the landlord and the tenant and decide on the eviction. A separate hearing may also be scheduled to determine if the tenant owes the landlord money. If the landlord is successful in the eviction lawsuit, the court will set a date by which the tenant must vacate the rental unit. The court will also provide a court order for the sheriff to be present at the eviction to ensure the tenant vacates the rental unit.

Prohibited Actions

A landlord cannot evict a tenant without a court order and the presence of a sheriff. Any attempts by the landlord to remove the tenant through means such as changing the locks or shutting off utilities may result in the tenant suing the landlord for damages. This type of action is referred to as a self-help eviction and is prohibited by Indiana law (as per Indiana Code § 32-31-5-6).