Eviction advice

Advice for tenants

Further support for commercial and residential tenants

There are certain actions that nearly always count as illegal eviction. Your landlord may be committing an offence if:

  • locks are changed while you are out
  • a landlord threatens you or forces you to leave
  • a landlord physically throws you out
  • a landlord stops you from getting into certain parts of your home

If your landlord is violent towards you or anyone in your household, this is a criminal offence and you should contact the police regarding the matter.

The proper procedure for eviction depends on the type of agreement you have with your landlord. In most cases this would involve giving you notice and getting a court orderThe only person who is legally allowed to physically remove you from your home is a court bailiff. It is not lawful for your landlord to evict you themselves. However if you live with your landlord or a member of your landlord's family, the rules of eviction may be different.

If you are evicted illegally, you may be able to: Get help from the council - we may be able to help you negotiate with your landlord or take enforcement action or force your way back into the property (as long as it's safe and legal to do so)

Many illegal evictions take place after office hours meaning it can be difficult to get help. Call the police and the person at the council who deals with harassment and illegal eviction. Our emergency out of hours telephone number is: 01827 709709

Harassment and illegal eviction are criminal offences and there can often be confusion about the law, and what responsibilities the police have. You need to show the police your tenancy agreement and point out the landlord is committing an offence under the Protection from Eviction Act 1977.  The police will usually agree to come to the property to prevent a breach of the peace from taking place. This could be helpful if you need to get back into the property, or reclaim your belongings. If the police are called and there is no bailiff warrant in place explain this to the police so they can act accordingly.

If you have difficulty getting the police to help you, or if they come to your home and mistakenly help your landlord to evict you illegally, tell them that you will inform to the The Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) which will investigate your complaint.