Court Proceedings

Hopefully, as a landlord, your tenancies will be trouble free and it will not be necessary for you to go to court.  

However, for example:

  • You may need to evict your tenant
  • You may need to get a County Court Judgment (CCJ) for rent arrears
  • Your tenant may refer your notice of rent increase to the First Tier Tribunal
  • You may be prosecuted by the authorities under the various regulations

This section has information and guides to help you.

Coronavirus rules

As you should know, all possession proceedings were stayed between March and September 2020 due to the Coronavirus pandemic and as a result of both that and the need for social distancing in the courts, there are now massive delays in all court claims.

Also, the notice periods for most possession notices has been changed to four months with effect from 1 June 2021 (with some exceptions) which are likely to remain until October 2021 – unless extended further at that time.

New court rules are in force as a result of the coronavirus pandemic to take account of the huge backlog of cases that have piled up during the long stay in 2020. 

These special rules are set out on a separate page (the Coronavirus Rules page).  

Our general advice is as follows:

  • Contact the tenants and see if you can resolve things amicably between yourselves
  • If this proves difficult, try one of the mediation services
  • If agreement proves impossible and you need to evict, use solicitors
  • If you decide to act in person in eviction proceedings  – be aware that most Judges will be looking for an excuse to adjourn or dismiss your claim in order to reduce the burden of work on the courts and homelessness generally.  So be very, very careful and double-check everything at least three times. Be aware also that saving money on legal fees at this time could easily prove to be a false economy.
  • In most cases, if the tenant is in arrears of rent you should use the section 8 procedure based on rent arrears as your claim may (if the arrears are serious) be given priority under the coronavirus rules.  This will not happen if you use the section 21 procedure, even if the arrears are actually very serious.

You will find a list of  our recommended solicitors here.

Tessa Shepperson

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