Consultation on ‘no-fault’ evictions a step in the right direction

Landlords will no longer be able to evict tenants using section 21 notices in new plans announced by the government.

Known as ‘no-fault’ evictions, section 21 notices enable landlords to take possession of a property let at the end of a fixed-term tenancy – without needing to give a reason.

“Although the Deregulation Act was supposed to put stop to ‘retaliatory’ evictions, in practice this has proven to be more bark than bite. Local authorities simply do not have the resources to pursue landlords who have failed to comply with their legal responsibilities,” according to the president of the Law Society of England and Wales, Christina Blacklaws.

“Government plans to consult on so-called ‘no-fault’ evictions are therefore a step in the right direction; section 21 has become one of the leading causes of family homelessness in the UK. Any new measures must balance the rights of landlords to their property with tenants’ rights to adequate protections. However, housing advice is already limited, and even when people are facing repossession, or disrepair presents major health risks, they may not be able to get the legal advice they need to properly enforce their rights.

“The courts exist to serve both landlords and tenants to effectively settle possession claims. The system must be provided with the appropriate resource if it is to maintain their confidence to do so.”

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