Colorado Eviction Process

When you are done reading about the Colorado Eviction Process below, we recommend you purchase the corresponding Colorado Eviction Notice to be delivered to your Tenant.


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The Colorado Eviction Process can be broken down into 4 steps:

  1. 3 Day Notice (Demand for Compliance)
  2. Serving the 3 Day Notice on the Tenant
  3. Filing the Forcible Entry and Detainer Lawsuit (Eviction Lawsuit)
  4. Obtaining a Judgment for Possession (Writ of Restitution)

3 Day Notice
The first step to evict a tenant for violating a lease or not paying rent is to properly serve them with a 3 Day Notice. In Colorado this is called a “Demand for Compliance.” It gives the tenant 3 days to fix the problem (usually by paying the rent) or else they have to leave. If they do not, you can sue them for eviction (see below). If the third day falls on a weekend or a holiday, then the tenant has until the following business day to cure the default.

Serving the 3 Day Notice
“Serving the notice” refers to the method in which you deliver the 3 Day Notice to the Tenant. If you do not complete this step correctly, then you will not be successful in suing the tenant for eviction in the next step. You may deliver or “serve” the tenant in one of the following manners:

  1. Physically handing the Notice to the Tenant
  2. Setting the documents down in front of the Tenant if they refuse to take them.
  3. Leaving the Notice with the Tenant’s family member who is 16 or older at the premises.
  4. Leaving the documents at the Tenant’s workplace with the Tenant’s secretary or assistant.
  5. Posting the 3 Day Notice in a conspicuous place on the premises (such as the front door).

Forcible Entry and Detainer Lawsuit
Once you serve the 3 Day Notice and have waited the 3 days, you may now file an eviction lawsuit against the tenant if they are still not out. The Eviction Lawsuit is called a “Forcible Entry and Detainer lawsuit.” Go to the County Court where your property is located, and go to the clerk’s office. The clerk’s office will most likely have the forms for you to fill out to start your lawsuit. When you file the lawsuit, the court clerk will give you a court date, which is usually 5 to 10 days from the filing date. You now have to serve the lawsuit on the tenant, or you can have the sheriff do this (this is recommended – ask the court clerk).

When you show up for your court date, bring evidence to prove your case, including the lease, a copy of the 3 Day Notice, and proof that it was properly served. If the tenant does not show up for the court date, it is likely the judge will award you a Possession Judgment and any monetary damages you are asking for (up to $15,000). If the tenant shows up, the judge will hear both sides and make a decision. If you are awarded a Possession Judgment, this means you are entitled to get possession of the property back and the tenant has 48 hours to vacate.

Writ of Restitution
If the tenant does not leave within 48 hours of the court ordering a Possession Judgment, you need to go back to the court and apply for a “Writ of Restitution.” Once the court approves your Writ of Restitution, you must contact the Sheriff’s Office to “execute” the Writ, which means physically remove the tenant.

Next Step: We recommend you purchase the corresponding Colorado Eviction Notice to be delivered to your Tenant.

This site strives to have the most current information on state eviction laws and forms, however, legislatures and judges’ rulings are always changing the laws. The information on this site is to be used as a guide, and is not to be used as legal advice, or as a substitute for the advice of an attorney. If you believe any information on this site is incorrect or needs to be updated, please Contact Us immediately.