A Section 21 eviction is when a landlord wishes to evict a tenant under Section 21 of the Housing Act 1988. This type of eviction only applies to assured shorthold tenancies.
A landlord may decide to evict a tenant under section 21 because it is usually faster and therefore cheaper. They also do not need to specify a reason for why they are seeking an eviction.
To qualify, the landlord must first ensure they have served the tenant with a valid notice. This means the notice must comply with all legal requirements and give the tenant sufficient notice by law.
If the tenant does not leave by the date specified in the notice, the landlord is entitled to start eviction proceedings in the county court. The landlord must do so as soon as possible and, in any event, within 6 months of service of the notice.
The landlord will start eviction proceedings in the county court and a copy of the eviction proceedings will be sent to the tenant. The tenant has a right to respond to proceedings by filing a Defence setting out their version of events.
Once the Defence has been filed at court, the judge will consider the case for a possession hearing. It is likely the case will be listed for a possession hearing especially if it is defended. Usually, a decision will be made on the day of the possession hearing and, if the landlord is successful, the judge will issue a court order setting out the final date for the tenant to leave the property.
Alternatively, the landlord may be unsuccessful or the judge may decide that the possession hearing needs to be adjourned due to further information and/or documents needed from the landlord and/or the tenant.
If the tenant does not leave by the date set out in the court order, the landlord will have the option to instruct the bailiffs to attend the property and evict the tenant. The bailiffs will provide the tenant with a notice setting out the date and time of the eviction before it happens.
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