Facing possession proceedings
If you are facing eviction or have been evicted from your home then we can advise you on your legal rights, depending on your landlord and your tenancy agreement.
Local authority or housing association landlords
If your landlord is a local authority or housing association, a court can order you to give up possession of your home in certain circumstances, such as where you are behind with your rent or where you or someone who lives with you has been harassing or causing nuisance and annoyance to others. How easy it will be for a local authority or housing association to get you out of your home depends on what you have done and the type of tenancy you have. It can be difficult to evict someone who has been in social housing for a long time and has a secure tenancy, but it is relatively easy to evict someone who has only been in social housing for a short time on an introductory tenancy or a tenant who is approaching the end of a fixed term social tenancy.
We can help you find out what type of tenancy you have and advise you on whether there is anything you can do to prevent eviction. For example, if you are behind with your rent, it might be possible to avoid eviction by offering to pay the arrears in instalments. It might also be possible to bring a counterclaim if your home is in a state of disrepair.
Our team have extensive experience of representing clients in possession proceedings.
If you are the assured shorthold tenant of a private landlord, a court can order you to give up possession of your home if your landlord has given you two months’ written notice of the need to leave and the notice contains certain information required by law. You may be able to delay the need to leave your home if the notice your landlord gave you did not contain this information or if they have failed to follow the other rules that apply to private rentals, such as the need to pay your tenancy deposit monies into an approved deposit protection scheme.
It is much easier for private landlords to regain possession of their property than it is for local authorities and housing associations. For this reason, it is important that if you are in private rented accommodation and you have been served with a notice asking you to leave, you obtain legal advice as soon as possible.
If you have already been evicted from your home
If you have already been evicted from your home and you think your landlord was wrong to do this, we can advise you on your options. In some circumstances, it may be possible for us to help you get your home back. In other circumstances, it may be possible for us to claim compensation on your behalf for the trouble you have been put to and for any loss or damage to your belongings as a result of the eviction. The most common situation where this will be possible is where your landlord was legally required to obtain a possession order from the court before evicting you but they failed to do this.
Our solicitors can advise you on your legal rights, and if appropriate we can help you challenge decisions that appear to be wrong or unlawful.
Funding the cost of legal advice
Legal aid is available to defend possession proceedings, to apply to suspend warrants of eviction and to challenge unlawful eviction if you are financially eligible and if the merits of the case meet the Legal Aid Agency’s criteria.
Contact us for expert legal advice
Based near Liverpool Street station in East London, we advise people right across London and beyond. We offer a comprehensive service, from initial advice to representation at court. The housing team is a member of the Housing Law Practitioners Association.
Contact our housing and property lawyers today, we are ready and waiting to help.