Eviction of introductory council tenants

The council can evict an introductory tenant after giving four weeks' notice and getting a court order.

Get advice if you are facing eviction

Get advice immediately if you have an introductory tenancy and the council has given you a notice to leave.

Take action before your case goes to court. Once the case gets to court, if the council has followed the correct procedure, the court will usually make an order for possession.

Contact the Civil Legal Advice helpline on 0345 345 4 345. You may be able to get help from a legal aid lawyer if you claim certain benefits or have a low income.

Anyone can call Shelter's free national helpline on 0808 800 4444.

For face to face help, use Shelter's directory to find a housing adviser at a Shelter advice service, Citizen's Advice or law centre.

Have the papers you received from the council with you when you speak to an adviser.

An adviser may be able to help you to convince the council that you shouldn't be evicted.

Why would the council evict you

You may be given an introductory tenancy if you are a new council tenant. This tenancy allows the council to give you a trial period as a tenant.

It is easy to evict you from an introductory tenancy.

The most common reasons the council might try to evict you include if you:

  • have caused nuisance to neighbours
  • haven't paid the rent
  • don't pay the water or heating charges that are included in your rent

How the council can evict you

To evict you from an introductory tenancy, the council must follow the correct procedure. It doesn't have to prove a legal reason in court.

The council must:

  • give you written notice
  • inform you of your right to ask for a review
  • consider any request for a review
  • apply to the court
  • ask bailiffs to evict you

You are likely to be evicted if the council applies to the court for a possession order.

Get advice immediately if you receive this notice.

Use Shelter's directory to find face-to-face advice in your area.

1. The council gives you notice

The council must give you at least four weeks' written notice that it intends to go to court to evict you.

This notice is known as a section 128 notice. It does not have to be on a special form.

The notice must say:

  • why the council wants to evict you
  • that you have the right to request a review of the council's decision to evict you

2. You can ask for a review

The section 128 notice must tell you that you have the right to ask for a review of the council's decision to ask a court to evict you.

You have 14 days from the date the notice was served to ask the council to review its decision. This is your opportunity to argue why you shouldn't be evicted.

The date the notice is served is the day after it's posted or when it is given to you if it is delivered by hand.

You can ask for a review hearing where you can make your case in person. If you do this, you can take a legal representative and call witnesses.

Or you can send in your arguments in writing. Include all the evidence you want the council to see.

The council then decides if it should apply to the court. It must tell you in writing what it decides. If it decides to carry on and go to court, it must tell you the reasons why.

3. The council applies to the court

To evict you the council must apply to the court for a possession order. The court writes to tell you the time and date of the court hearing.

At the hearing, the court must make a possession order, as long as the council has followed the correct procedure.

Only in exceptional circumstances can a court decide not to make a possession order.

The possession order gives you the date you must move out of your accommodation. This will normally be in 14 days.

The court can delay the date for up to six weeks but only if you will suffer exceptional hardship if you have to leave sooner. You must ask the court to do this.

Use Shelter's directory to find a housing adviser at a Shelter advice service.

4. The council asks bailiffs to evict you

If you don't leave your home by the date given in a possession order from the court, the council can apply to the court asking for bailiffs to be sent to evict you.

The court sends you a letter to let you know when the bailiffs are coming.

Find out more about eviction by bailiffs.

Your best chance of stopping the bailiffs at this stage is to persuade the council to stop them. For example you can contact the council with a realistic proposal for how you plan to pay your rent and rent arrears, and ask them to stop the bailiffs.

Use Shelter's directory to find a housing adviser at a Shelter advice service.

 

Last updated:

  • Print this page
  • Email this page