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What you can do after illegal eviction

If you've been illegally evicted from your home, you may have the right to get back in and the right to get your belongings back.

Get advice after illegal eviction

Ask your council for help. A tenancy relations officer at the council should be able to advise you. They may even come with you and help you get back into your home.

Call the police on 999 if you are facing violence or you're in immediate danger.

Call Shelter's free national helpline on 0808 800 4444 to speak to one of our expert advisers

Use Shelter's directory to find local advice from Shelter, Citizens Advice or a law centre

Take legal action to get back into your home

You can ask a court for an injunction that orders your landlord to let you back into your home if you have been illegally evicted.

In an emergency you can ask the court to act quickly, even on the same day.

If you can re-enter your home

Get advice to find out if it's legal for you to re-enter your home. You could have the right to re-enter your home after illegal eviction.

Do not try to get back into your home if:

  • new tenants have already moved in
  • there is a risk of injury or violence to yourself or others
  • you're not sure your eviction was illegal

if  you cause damage when re-entering your home, you could be charged with criminal damage.

If you change the lock, keep the old lock and any keys. Refit the old lock and give the keys to your landlord when you leave.

Find somewhere to live after illegal eviction

You may be entitled to emergency housing if illegal eviction has left you with nowhere to live. Get help from the council if you are homeless.

Ask your local council about going on its waiting list for housing.

You may be able to get help paying a deposit for a private rented home through a rent deposit or guarantee scheme.

You can use a letting agency to help you find a home to rent, but you will have to pay fees and charges.

Find out more about finding a private rented home.

Get your belongings back after illegal eviction

Your landlord must make sure your belongings are returned to you or must allow you to collect them.

Your landlord cannot keep, sell or destroy your belongings. They must not just put your belongings on the doorstep for you to collect.

Contact your landlord to arrange the return or collection of your belongings.

You can take the landlord to court and claim compensation if they've lost or damaged your belongings.

Get advice about taking your landlord to court.

Use Shelter's directory to find local advice from Shelter, Citizens Advice or a law centre

Get your tenancy deposit back after illegal eviction

If you're an assured shorthold tenant, your tenancy deposit should have been protected with an authorised scheme.

You can use the deposit protection scheme's dispute resolution service to help get your tenancy deposit back.

The service can also help if you disagree with the amount the landlord has kept.

If your landlord refuses to use the dispute resolution service, you can take them to court for the return of your deposit.

You can also take your landlord to court to get your deposit back if your deposit did not have to be protected by a government scheme.

If you claim compensation from your landlord for illegal eviction, you can make a claim for the return of your deposit as part of the same court application.

Find out more about illegal eviction injunctions and compensation.

Last updated 26 Apr 2016 | © Shelter

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