South Dakota Eviction Process & Laws | Free SD Eviction Notices

The South Dakota eviction process is the legal action of making a filing with the District Court that a tenant has failed to respond to a notice to quit. The tenant, having failed to pay back-rent, fix a noncompliance, or move-out at the end of a month to month tenancy, will be liable for a lawsuit to be filed against them. The landlord will need gather their respective forms at their local court (Complaint & Summons) and file it along with the State fee request. If the landlord wins their case the Execution for Possession will be administered and the tenant will be required to leave, on their own or forcibly, within a few days.

NonPayment Laws - 3 days § 21-16-2

NonCompliance Laws - Reasonable time § 43-32-18

Month to Month Laws - 30 days § 43-32-13

Forcible Entry and Detainer Laws - Chapter 21-16

Types of Notice



South Dakota 3 Day Notice to Pay or Quit | NonPayment of Rent

The South Dakota three (3) day notice to pay or quit, as stated in Statute 21-16-2, is required to be served on a tenant who has failed to pay rent. The notice provides the tenant with three days to either pay the total past due amount or vacate the rental unit….

South Dakota 30 Day Notice to Vacate | Month to Month Lease

The South Dakota thirty (30) notice to vacate, in connection with Section 43-32-13, is a notice that is used to inform a tenant of the landlord’s intention to terminate the monthly rental agreement. The notice provides the recipient with thirty (30) days to vacate the rental unit. If the tenant does…

South Dakota Notice to Cure or Vacate | NonCompliance

The South Dakota notice to cure or vacate, in regards to Section 43-32-18, is a notice that is sent to the tenant when they have violated the lease other than the nonpayment of rent. This notice is to allow the tenant ‘reasonable time’ to cure the issue described in the…

Process How to Evict a Tenant

The only way to legally evict a tenant in South Dakota is to obtain a court order from the circuit court of the county where the rental property is located. “Self-help” evictions (locking the tenant out of the unit, changing locks, etc.) are not legal in South Dakota. The tenant must receive a written notice informing them of the eviction. There are three main types of eviction notices: the three (3) day notice to pay/quit, the 30 day notice to vacate, and the notice to cure (noncompliance).

Step 1 – Serve the tenant with the proper notice. The notice should be delivered personally, however it can also be posted on the premises of the property* (and a second copy sent via certified mail).

*The notice can only be posted on the property if the landlord has tried to locate the tenant/serve the notice personally a minimum of two times.

Note: If the tenant has failed to pay rent, serve them with the three (3) day notice to pay/quit, if the eviction is due to a breach in the lease agreement then serve the tenant with the notice to comply/cure. In order to terminate a month-to-month lease, the tenant must be served with a 30 day termination notice.

Step 2 – Allow the tenant the full notice period (three days for nonpayment) to pay the past due rent or vacate the unit. If the tenant does not pay the rent or vacate the property within the time period specified in the notice, the next step is to file an eviction lawsuit.

Step 3 – File the eviction lawsuit (i.e. “Forcible Entry and Detainer”) in the circuit court that has jurisdiction of the county where the rental property is located. The forms that must be filed are the Complaint and Summons. The tenant must be served with a copy of the Complaint/Summons, and they will have four to thirty days to file an answer (depending on the specifics of the lawsuit).

Step 4 – If the tenant fails to provide a written answer within the required time frame, a default judgement will be issued against them (forcing them to vacate the rental property). If the tenant does file a written answer, a hearing date will be arranged by the court. Both the landlord and tenant must show up in court on the date of the hearing. If a judgement is made in favor of the landlord, the tenant will be required to vacate the rental property.

Note: After a judgement has been made, the landlord can obtain an “Execution for Possession.” The Execution will order the Sheriff to evict the tenant.