Eviction Notices Must be Mailed from the Same County

The Washington Court of Appeals issued an unpublished opinion today on an unlawful detainer case in which one of the issues raised on appeal was that the declaration of service for the notice to pay rent or vacate did not indicate that the notice was mailed from the same county.

Although as unpublished the opinion cannot be cited as legal authority, it is interesting to see how the Court reasoned and ruled on this issue.

Service of eviction notices under certain circumstances requires mailing.  When mailing is required the notice must be mailed from the same county.[1]

In the recently decided case the declaration of service did not indicate whether the notice was mailed from the same county.  However, the court ruled that the language in the statute requiring mailing from the same county “does not establish a requirement for valid service; it only sets forth a means of proving service to establish a date by which service will be ‘deemed complete’”.

This is arguably a distinction without a difference.  If the landlord never mails the notice form the same county, then the service is never deemed complete.

As the opinion is unpublished the issue may come up again

[1] RCW 59.12.040.