If you no longer have a legal right to stay in your home, your home can't be lived in, or you are at risk of violence or abuse from someone living in your home, you may be considered homeless or threatened with homelessness.
If this applies to you, it is important that you seek advice.
It is a criminal offence for a landlord to evict, or threaten to evict a tenant without a court order, and it is also a criminal offence for a landlord to harass a tenant.
If you’ve been evicted or threatened with eviction, call 01622 602440. If you’re being harassed call the Police on 101. You could also contact Citizens Advice Bureau to speak to a housing solicitor, or seek advice from Shelter.
There are certain actions that nearly always count as unlawful eviction. Your landlord will probably be committing an offence if they:
Change the locks while you are out
Threaten you if you do not leave
Physically throw you out
Stop you from getting into certain parts of your home
If you are unlawfully evicted, there may be evidence of a criminal offence and you can take your landlord to court.
Harassment can be something that disrupts your life at home or actions intended to make you leave. If your landlord, or anyone acting on their behalf, is harassing you, or anyone else in your home, you may be able to get help from us or take your landlord to court.
The fact your landlord owns your home does not give them the right to harass you. Harassment is a criminal offence.
Harassment can be:
Disconnection of the electricity or gas
Entering your home or room without permission
Threats or violence of any kind
Harassing you because of (for example) your gender, race or sexuality
Opening your mail
Taking your belongings
Starting repair work and not finishing it
If you feel that you are being harassed then you should keep a record of incidents or a diary, which should include dates, times and events that have taken place. You can ask witnesses to write a short statement and take photographs if your landlord has caused damage. Contact the police on 101 or if you feel that you are in immediate danger then call 999.
Normally, for an eviction to be lawful, the landlord has to apply to the court for a possession order. This is where bailiffs make sure you have left.
If you live in the same property as your landlord they will not normally need a court order to evict you and they only need to give you reasonable notice to leave.
Problems paying your mortgage?
If you’re having trouble paying your mortgage, talk to your mortgage lender, work out your budget and pay as much of your mortgage as you can each month.
You need to check whether your repayments are covered by any insurance policy and find out whether you are entitled to any benefits that may help or call the Citizens Advice Bureau for help and advice.
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