Council and housing association tenants: eviction for rent arrears

What to do if you get notice from the bailiffs

What a notice from the bailiffs means

A bailiffs' notice means your council or housing association have asked bailiffs to evict you.

Your landlord can do this if either:

  • you break the conditions in a suspended order

  • the date for possession on an outright order has passed

A notice of eviction from the bailiffs tells you the time and date of the eviction.

You can still take action to keep your home. Get legal advice

Who you can ask to stop the eviction

You can always ask your council or housing association to stop the eviction.

You can also ask the court to stop the eviction, unless the possession order was made on ground 8.

Tenancy typeGround proved at the hearingWho can stop the eviction
Assured housing association tenancyGourd 8 - serious rent arrearsOnly your landlord
Assured housing association tenancyGround 10 or 11 - some rent arrears or late paymentsThe court or your landlord
Secure council or housing association tenancyGround 1 - rent arrearsThe court or your landlord

Ask your landlord to cancel the eviction

The council or housing association may still consider stopping the eviction at this stage if you show that you will:

  • pay your weekly rent in full

  • reduce your arrears in affordable instalments

Tell them what you've done to sort out any benefit delays and deal with other debts so you can prioritise your rent payments.

If they agree to stop the eviction

Your council or housing association should tell the court if you come to an agreement.

Check with the court and the bailiffs that they've done this, or the eviction could still happen.

You must stick to the repayment plan. If you don't, your council or housing association can ask for a new eviction date.

If they won't stop the eviction

The bailiffs will come on the eviction date as planned if you're a housing association tenant with a possession order made on ground 8.

If the possession order was made on a different ground, you can still ask the court to suspend the warrant but you must act quickly.

Ask the court to suspend the warrant

You should apply to court at least 3 days before the eviction is due to take place.

You need to fill in Form N244 and attend a short hearing.

It costs £14 to apply unless you qualify for help with court fees.

It's possible to apply to suspend a warrant even on the day of the eviction but it's very risky to leave it this late. Phone the bailiffs first thing and tell them you've applied. If you don't, the eviction could happen while you're at court.

Last updated: 30 September 2021

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