Emergency laws have been introduced in Wales to protect tenants from eviction for a temporary period.
From 29 September 2020, most tenants in Wales are entitled to 6 months’ notice before their landlord can start court action to evict them. This includes :
- assured shorthold tenants
- assured tenants
- regulated tenants
- secure council tenants
- introductory tenants
- demoted tenants.
You could be given a shorter notice in some cases. For example if you’re facing eviction for antisocial behaviour.
What if I received a notice from my landlord before the 29 September 2020?
- Most private or housing association tenants who got an eviction notice between 26 March 2020 and 23 July 2020 were entitled to 3 months’ notice
- Most private or housing association tenants who got an eviction notice between 24 July 2020 and 28 September 2020 were entitled to 6 months’ notice
- Most council tenants who got an eviction notice between 26 March 2020 and 28 September 2020 were entitled to 3 months’ notice.
What if my landlord has already started court proceedings to evict me?
The way the courts are dealing with possession cases has changed during the coronavirus pandemic.
Courts are still able to process possession cases but bailiffs in Wales are unable to carry out any evictions until after 30 June 2021, except in limited circumstances, such as if you are being evicted for anti-social behaviour. This means that even if your landlord has obtained a possession order from the court, in most cases bailiffs will not currently be able to evict you from your home.
There are also some new stages in the possession process. These include:
Reactivation Notices: if your landlord started court proceedings before 3 August 2020 it is likely that it was put on hold for a time. Your landlord must send a Reactivation Notice to you and the court to re-start the case. In the notice they must give information to the court about the impact coronavirus has had on you and your family. Make sure you tell your landlord straight away if you are struggling because of coronavirus, for example, if your income has reduced and you cannot pay your rent. It is best to do this in an email. Your landlord will then have to pass this information on to the court in any Reactivation Notice.
Review Date: in most cases the court will set a Review Date for the judge to review the papers and see if an agreement can be reached before a court hearing takes place. You don’t need to go to court on the Review Date but you will be told when it is so that you can try and make an agreement if possible.
Courts remain open but some hearings might be dealt with by telephone or a video link. Make sure you contact the court in advance of any court hearing if you are worried about going to the court because of coronavirus.
Court duty advisers are available to help you on any Review Date or at any possession hearing. Details of how to contact an adviser should be sent to you with the papers from the court.
If you have received possession papers from the county court use our guide to find out what will happen next.
For more information on eviction, see our pages on eviction : court action.
Always get advice if possession proceedings have started against you. You could still lose your home during the pandemic.