How Long Does a Tenant Have to Vacate Once the Writ of Restitution Enters?

The writ of restitution is the final document required in an eviction. It is issued either following the tenant’s default or following an immediate occupancy hearing. Essentially, it is the key back into your property. The law states that a court shall allow three calendar days from the date of service of the order for the tenant to vacate unless the court finds a shorter or longer period is more appropriate.

Fortunately, most judges in Utah strictly adhere to the three day guideline. Unfortunately, there are still many cases were a judge grants more time to the detriment of the landlord. In these cases, there is little to nothing a landlord can do other than reiterate the law encourages a three-day limit. Thus, although most writs allow only three calendar days for a tenant to vacate, it is up to the judge to determine the appropriate timeline (a very good reason to always show respect to the court).

Once the writ of restitution has issued, you need to get it served. You must serve the writ along with a form Request for Hearing. The tenant is entitled to request a hearing to address the enforcement of the writ of restitution. This very rarely happens. Furthermore, the tenant is still required to vacate unless the appropriate bond is paid or the court orders otherwise.  Generally, the required bond is the amount of damages, inclusive of attorney fees, that the tenant will have to pay if the court rules against him or her.

NOTE: If you are not using a Utah Eviction Lawyer, do not forget to that the writ MUST be served by a sheriff or constable. Even more important, you cannot lock the tenant out without a sheriff or constable, even if the tenant is not present in the residence.

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