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Mandatory ASB ground: Assured tenancies

This content applies to England

A mandatory ground is available for seeking possession of an assured tenancy where antisocial behaviour has already been proved in another court.

Overview

Ground 7A came into force on 20 October 2014.[1] In the legislation it is referred to as an 'absolute ground for possession'. The government has issued Reform of anti-social behaviour powers: statutory guidance for frontline professionals, which includes a chapter on using this ground.

The court must award possession if any one of five specified conditions below is met and the landlord has served a notice of seeking possession. For information about the notice requirements see the page Notices: Assured tenancies.

Social landlords should follow the Pre-action Protocol for Possession Cases by Social Landlords before pursuing possession proceedings.

Condition 1: Conviction of serious offence

The tenant, or anyone living in or visiting the property, has been convicted of a serious offence that was committed on or after 20 October 2014:

  • in the locality of the dwelling house, or
  • elsewhere against either a person who lives, or has a right to occupy accommodation, in the locality, or
  • elsewhere against the landlord or someone employed (whether or not by the landlord) in connection with the landlord's housing management functions.

A serious offence for this purpose must be one of the specific offences set out in the legislation.[2]

Condition 2: Breach of IPNA

A court found that the tenant, or anyone living in or visiting the property, had breached a provision of an injunction to prevent nuisance or annoyance (IPNA).[3]

The breach must have occurred in the locality, or elsewhere if the IPNA was granted in order to prevent harassment, alarm or distress to: 

  • a person who lives, or has a right to occupy accommodation, in the locality
  • the landlord or someone employed (whether or not by the landlord) in connection with the landlord's housing management functions.

The condition is not met where the breach of the IPNA only relates to a failure to participate in a particular activity.

Condition 2 was not available until 23 March 2015 when Part 1 of the Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014 came into effect.

For more information about IPNAs see the page Injunctions to prevent nuisance and annoyance.

Condition 3: Breach of a criminal behaviour order

The tenant, or anyone living in or visiting the property, has been convicted of a breach of a criminal behaviour order that prohibits an activity[4] in the locality, or elsewhere when the criminal behaviour order was intended to protect:

  • a person who lives, or has a right to occupy accommodation, in the locality
  • the landlord or someone employed (whether or not by the landlord) in connection with the landlord's housing management functions.

For more information see the page on Criminal behaviour orders.

Condition 4: Closure order

A closure order[5] has been made on the tenant's property and access to the property under the order (and/or a closure notice) has been prohibited for more than 48 hours.

For more information see the page on Closure Orders.

Condition 5: Noise nuisance

The tenant, or anyone living in or visiting the property, has been convicted of an offence under section 80(4) or 82(8) of the Environmental Protection Act 1990 as a result of breaching an abatement notice or court order in relation to noise nuisance committed on or after 20 October 2014.

For more information about these offences see the pages on Abatement notices and Action by occupiers.

Condition not met

Conditions 1 to 5 will not be met if an appeal against the conviction, order, or finding is:

  • pending 
  • successful.

Other grounds for possession for reasons of antisocial behaviour

There are also three discretionary grounds for possession for reasons of antisocial behaviour available to landlords of assured tenants:

  • Ground 14 – nuisance or annoyance, or the illegal or immoral use of the property
  • Ground 14A – domestic violence (only available to private registered providers of social housing or charitable housing trusts).
  • Ground 14ZA – offence committed during a riot

For more information see the page on Discretionary grounds: Assured tenancies.

Wales

The information on this page applies only to England. Go to Shelter Cymru for information relating to Wales.

[1] ground 7A, Sch.2 Housing Act 1988, as inserted by s.97 Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014, and Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014 (Commencement no.7, Saving and Transitional Provisions) Order 2014, SI 2014/2590.

[2] Sch 2A Housing Act 1985 as inserted by Sch 3 Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014.

[3] under s.1 Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014.

[4] under s.30 Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014.

[5] under s.80 Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014.

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