Civil Process Services

Civil Stand-By (Public Assistance)

Ada County residents sometimes ask for help in going to an address to retrieve property. ACSO can escort the requesting party to the location only if the other party is willing to exchange the property.

If the parties do not agree to the exchange of property, a court order is required in order for the Sheriff's Office to assist in getting the property. If the other party does not allow you to get your property, we suggest that you seek the advice of an attorney to get an appropriate assistance order. This order will give the Sheriff's Office the authority to seize your property if resistance is met.


Eviction Process

The eviction process can be quite complex and often requires legal advice. The Sheriff's Civil Division deputies are not qualified nor are they authorized to answer legal questions. However, the following information on general eviction procedures is offered. For further information you may consult an attorney.


Notice to Vacate/Quit

A written Notice to Vacate must first be served on the tenant prior to proceeding to a summons/complaint for unlawful detainer. This notice can be served by the Sheriff's Office, but can also be served by an adult not a party to the action. If the tenant refuses to vacate after proper service of the notice, the landlord must proceed to the next step in the eviction process, which is to file a complaint in court for unlawful detainer.



Defendants/tenants must be served with this summons to begin the process leading to a court hearing. This document can be served by the Sheriff's Office, but again can be served by a private individual or process service company.


Writ of Restitution

This court order gives the Sheriff's Office the power to remove defendants/tenants from the property. If the defendants refuse to remove themselves and their property, then the Sheriff is authorized to remove and seize that property. The Sheriff is allowed under Idaho law to sell that property to pay for any costs incurred by the Sheriff's Office. Plaintiffs must pay in advance all costs of enforcement. The Sheriff's Office performs the following actions when it receives a Writ of Restitution:

  1. The Civil Division prepares the document advising the defendants/tenants that they are allowed 24/48 hours to vacate the property on their own, unless an emergency exists. The order is either served to the defendants or posted on the door of the property. If the court paper is received prior to 2:00 P.M., it will be served that day; if received after 2:00 P.M., it will be served on the next business day.
  2. On the day of eviction, a deputy will enter and inspect the property to determine if the defendants/tenants have vacated. If the tenants have vacated, the deputy will contact the plaintiffs, and the property will be turned over at that time. If the tenants have not vacated, the deputy will contact the plaintiffs about moving the property and assess a fee based on prior moves that have been performed by the Sheriff's Office. The deputy may adjust the advanced fee required, but it generally approximates $1200 and is used to guarantee that the contracted moving company is paid for its services. If the property is sold at a Sheriff's sale, and the amount received covers those costs, then the advanced fee will be returned to the plaintiffs. No moving company will be contracted until the Sheriff's Office receives the proper fee in advance. Plaintiffs are not permitted to move the belongings.

Printable Writ of Restitution description


Collection Process on Writs of Execution

A Writ of Execution is a court order that commands the Sheriff to levy on the property of a debtor for the satisfaction of a debt. In addition to the Writ of Execution, you must give the Sheriff's Office a letter of instruction describing the property to be seized. If you do not know what property the debtor possesses, the Sheriff can serve the document and make a demand for the payment of that debt.

Idaho law does not require the Sheriff to ask questions concerning the debtor's property. The Sheriff will however, ask the debtor a series of questions concerning his property, which is called a Notice of Inquiry. You will be notified if the debtor refuses to answer. You must then schedule a Debtor's Examination Hearing with the courts and have the debtor served with notice of the hearing. Please seek the advice of an attorney if you have any questions.


Exemption Process

All property levied on by the Sheriff is required to be held for fourteen days before it can be sold. During the exemption period, the debtor or a third party can claim that the levied property was either exempt from execution under Idaho law (Idaho Code 11-603), or the third party may file an ownership claim.

The Sheriff's Office will notify you if a claim of exemption is made, and you will have five business days to set a court hearing to contest the claim. If you do not want to contest the claim, you must advise the Sheriff, and the property will be returned to the defendant. If no claims are made during the exemption period, a Sheriff's sale will be conducted and the money from the sale will pay all contract and Sheriff's fees. Any additional funds will be applied towards the satisfaction of the judgment.


Downloadable Documents

Below are some additonal documents available for download. Each document is in the PDF format and will require the Adobe Reader.


  1. Writ of Restitution - one (1) page
  2. Garnishment and Levying - two (2) pages
  3. Letter of Instructions - This form has to be filled out in order for the Sheriffs Office to do any type of service. One (1) page.
  4. Notice of Garnishment State Controller Tax Refund Levy -  If you choose the Serve Levy on State Income Tax Refund you must fill out the garnishment form for the State Controller Tax Refund Levy - Notice of Garnishment (the TO: should already be indicating the Idaho State Controller- Tax Refund Levy). One (1) page.
  5. Notice Of Garnishment on Wages - If you choose serve continuing wage garnishment to employer on the instruction letter you will need to fill out the Notice of Garnishment form - with the TO: indicating the employer information. One (1) page.
  6. Claim of Exemption or Third Party Claim - This form is used only by the Defendant or third party  to fill out and send back to us if they have received a garnishment and they feel that the funds being levied on are exempt.  Wages are not considered exempt. One (1) page.
  7. Notice of Garnishment for Banks