Possession Proceedings Guidance Notes

Guidance Notes: Obtaining Possession of Residential PropertyUpdated


These Guidance Notes: Obtaining Possession of Residential Property are designed to help Landlords navigate their way through the “Accelerated Procedure” for obtaining possession of a property let on an Assured Shorthold Tenancy (AST).

They cover service of a Section 21 Notice, applications to Court for a Possession Order and taking enforcement action if the Tenant does not vacate as ordered. The relevant documents in our Possession Proceedings subfolder are signposted.

Due to the Coronavirus pandemic, at the time of writing there is a temporary ban in England on eviction notices being served and bailiffs executing warrants of possession of land from 17 November 2020 to 11 January 2021 unless an exemption applies.  The exemptions are:

1. To evict occupants where 'substantial' rent arrears have accrued.  The arrears must equate to 9 months' rent and must have accrued before the 23 March 2020, 

2. To evict trespassers, 

3. To evict occupants on the grounds of anti-social behaviour, 

4. To evict occupants on the grounds of nuisance or domestic abuse or false statements, and 

5. Where a property is unoccupied following the death of a tenant. 

It may take longer than usual to evict tenants due to national restrictions being imposed.  

These guidance notes cover the procedure in both England and Wales. They have been updated to reflect changes made to the procedure during the Coronavirus pandemic.

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