Unlawful Detainer (Eviction Actions)

The Sheriff's Office charges for fees for the following functions, see section on Fees.

Commencing an Unlawful Detainer Action
An unlawful detainer action is required in order to evict a tenant from rental property. These actions are regulated by Minnesota statutes 566. There are four common reasons for evicting a tenant:
  • Delinquent rent payments
  • Violation of lease provisions
  • Failure to move after 30 days written notice
  • Landlord is notified by law enforcement authorities of narcotics sales, or activities on the tenants premises
To commence an Unlawful Detainer Action, the property owner (plaintiff) must file a Complaint and Unlawful Detainer in the county in which the property is located. If the property is located in Meeker County this is to be done at:
Meeker County Court Administrator Office
325 N Sibley Avenue
Litchfield, MN 55355
Phone: 320-693-5230

Issuing a Summons

When the complaint has been filed, the Court Administrator will establish a court date, issue a Summons, and provide the plaintiff with enough copies of the Summons and Complaint to serve each defendant. If the tenant has unknown parties living on the premises, the plaintiff can list John Doe, Mary Roe, etc. as additional defendants. Summons and Compliant must be served on each tenant/defendant no less than 7 days prior to the court date, exclusive of the court date. The service must be made by a 3rd person who is not part of the court action. A notarized affidavit of service must be filed with the Court Administrator before the date of the court hearing. The Meeker County Sheriff's Office can serve the papers on the tenant/defendant. The original Summons plus the defendant's copies of the Summons and Complaints should be delivered as soon as the plaintiff receives them to:
Meeker County Sheriff's Office
326 North Ramsey Avenue
Litchfield, MN 55355
Attn: Civil
Phone: 320-693-5410

If a Sheriff's Deputy does not find the defendants at home after making attempts on at least 2 different days, 1 day prior to 5 p.m. and 1 day after 5 p.m., the Deputy will post the Summons and Complaint on the door of the premises involved in the Unlawful Detainer action. The deputy will complete the appropriate Certificate of Service and the original Summons and Affidavit will be filed with the Court Administrator's Office by the Sheriff's Office. The Complaint Unlawful Detainer Form is available at most office supply stores.

If a judge finds in favor of the plaintiff at the hearing, a Writ of Recovery and Order to Vacate will be authorized. This is an order for the Sheriff to restore the premises to the plaintiff. The Writ must be taken to the Sheriff's Office for service. A deputy will serve the Writ on the defendants if they are at home or it will be posted on the door of the premises. In either case, the defendants will be provided with a 24 hour notice advising that the Sheriff can remove the defendants 24 hours after the Writ is served or posted. If the defendants fail to vacate the premises, the plaintiff must contact the Sheriff's Office to schedule a lock out. There are 2 types of evictions to find under Minnesota statutes:
  • Removal of the personal property of the defendants
  • Inventory of personal property and storing it on the premises