Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Many people are worried about Coronavirus (COVID-19) and how this could affect their housing. Click here to find out what COVID-19 means for you.

Eviction of council tenants

As a council tenant you generally have the right to stay in your home, providing you don’t break the rules of your tenancy. The procedure the council must follow will depend on the type of tenancy you have.

If you are a council tenant and threatened with eviction, speak to an adviser immediately. Even if the bailiffs are on the way, it’s never too late to get help.


Emergency laws mean that:

  1. Most council tenants who get an eviction notice between 26 March 2020 and 30 September 2020 are entitled to 3 months’ notice before their landlord can apply to court
  2. All court proceedings for eviction are on hold until at least the 23 August 2020.
  • These new laws apply to secure, introductory and demoted tenancies
  • If you have received a Notice Seeking Possession or a notice to end your introductory tenancy from your landlord you should stay in your home. Evictions take time and you don’t have to leave at the end of your notice under current law
  • If your landlord has already applied to the court then your case will be put off until after the 23 August 2020
  • If your landlord wants to continue the case to evict you after the 23 August 2020 they will need to send a notice to you and to the court. They must give information in the notice about the impact coronavirus has had on you and your family
  • You will be contacted by the court if this happens and you will be told if there is to be a court hearing. The hearing might be dealt with by video or audio link
  • You should still pay your rent during any notice period or while you are waiting for a court hearing.

See Gov.Wales for the current Welsh Government advice.

See Public Health Wales for up to date health advice.

The steps involved in eviction

To evict you from a tenancy, the council must usually take 3 steps:

  1. send you notice to leave
  2. apply to the court for a possession order
  3. ask the court to send bailiffs to evict you.

If you are a secure council tenant, before starting court action to evict you, the council must follow the rules set out in a special pre-action protocol.

The rules on eviction are different depending on what type of tenancy you have. Most council tenants have secure tenancies, but you could also have an introductory or demoted tenancy. Ask your council if you are not sure what type of tenant you are.

Can I defend the possession claim?

If you believe that:

  • the council is wrong in what they say either in the notice, or in the court papers
  • the notice does not comply with the rules
  • the council has not followed the pre-action protocol, or
  • that in all the circumstances it would not be reasonable for you to be evicted,

you may have grounds to defend the claim. This will depend on what type of tenancy you have and you should get advice immediately from an adviser.

We are sorry that we cannot provide this information in Welsh, however if you would like to speak to an adviser in Welsh please contact 08000 495 495.

Phone an adviser

If you have a housing problem, call our expert housing advice helpline
08000 495 495

Email an adviser

If you have a non-urgent problem and would like to speak to an adviser
email us

Pre-action eviction rules

Before starting court action to evict you, the council must follow the rules set out in a special pre-action protocol.

Notice from the council

The first formal step for the council to evict you is to give you a notice. The length of the notice depends on the type of tenancy you have and the reason the council wants to evict you.

Grounds of eviction

Most council tenants cannot be evicted unless the council applies to court and proves a ‘ground of eviction’.

Court orders

Most council tenants cannot be evicted unless the council obtains a court order. It is important that you get advice and go to any court hearing.

This page was last updated on: July 27, 2020

Shelter Cymru acknowledges the support of Shelter in allowing us to adapt their content. The information contained on this site is updated and maintained by Shelter Cymru and only gives general guidance on the law in Wales. It should not be regarded or relied upon as a complete or authoritative statement of the law.

Font Resize