Aggressive Tennant

I had an incident recently in a flat share when a tennant(1) who had 5 days left of his AST notice to vacate, was violent and racially abusive towards another tennant(2). T2 recorded of the 1 hour incident on his phone.
I didn't want to be 'judge and jury' but I had seen the phone evidence and felt T2 should be protected against a further incident (T1 had tempoarily left the property by the time I arrived).
The police became involved and said they would put an order in place to prevent T1 returning to the property. I contacted T1 and informed him of the order and made arrangements to return his property. The matter is being dealt with through the courts and from my perspective is finnished but has left me with questions;

[1] Should I have any proof that a restriction order was in place?

[2] What can I do regarding immediate termination of the contract if a similar incident occurs?

Jeffrey Shaw

Staff member
Are you L or L's Letting Agent?
1. Yes, written proof is essential- in case T1 claims that you harassed him.
2. Look at ground 14 in Schedule 2 to the Housing Act 1988- a (discretionary) s.8 ground for possession against T:

The tenant or a person residing in or visiting the dwelling-house:
(a) has been guilty of conduct causing or likely to cause a nuisance or annoyance to a person residing, visiting or otherwise engaging in a lawful activity in the locality, or
(b) has been convicted of:
(i) using the dwelling-house or allowing it to be used for immoral or illegal purposes, or
(ii) an indictable offence committed in, or in the locality of, the dwelling-house.
I am the landlady.
I have read the section you suggested in the 1988 housing act.
[1] Am I correct then in thinking that if there is a breech of contract I issue a section 8 on ground 14, which then changes the contract into a periodic tenancy, then I apply to the courts on these grounds and await their decision?
[2] If so, how long does this take?
[3] To remove a tennant immediately on these grounds, is the only legal way to get the police to get a court order ie as part of bail conditions?
[4] If so, where and when would I get written proof?
[5] If I get the written proof, can I re let the room?

Jeffrey Shaw

Staff member
1. Not quite. Serving a s.8 notice warns T that you'll be seeking a Possession Order; but it does not itself end the AST (fixed-term or periodic).
2. Ground 14 is unique in that L can begin proceedings at once, after it's served- no waiting period, unlike all the other grounds.
3. No. Ground 14(a) does not require a conviction- compare wording with ground 14(b)- as long as L can prove T's conduct to Court's satisfaction.
4. Obviously, the written evidence from Police- see item 1 in my post #2.
5. No, not until a s.7 Possession Order is made/executed and the letting ends. See s.5(1) and esp. s.5(1A):

5(1). An assured tenancy cannot be brought to an end by the landlord except by:
(a) obtaining:
(i) an order of the court for possession of the dwelling-house under section 7 or 21, and
(ii) the execution of the order,
(b) obtaining an order of the court under section 6A (demotion order), or
(c) in the case of a fixed term tenancy which contains power for the landlord to determine the tenancy in certain circumstances, by the exercise of that power,
and, accordingly, the service by the landlord of a notice to quit is of no effect in relation to a periodic assured tenancy.

(1A) Where an order of the court for possession of the dwelling-house is obtained, the tenancy ends when the order is executed.
It is my experience that the courts tend to give earlier hearings on ground 14 claims than other section 8 claims. Also, such claims seems to attract priority when submitted to bailiffs - welcome news when a 'regular' section 8 can take an average of 6 weeks before the bailiffs enforce it.