Ending a statutory regulated tenancy

Even if the landlord and tenant agree to bring the protected tenancy to an end, or if one of them serves a notice to quit on the other, this does not mean that the tenant is required to leave the accommodation. S/he will now have a statutory tenancy. There are set ways for the statutory tenancy to be brought to an end.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) and changes to eviction procedure

The Coronavirus (Scotland) Act 2020 has the effect of temporarily changing

  • the period of notice required (until 29 March 2022)

  • all grounds used in eviction actions in the private rented sector become discretionary (until at least 30 September 2022)

These changes apply from 7th April 2020.

If you are advising a client with a regulated tenancy who is at risk of eviction please speak to a specialist housing law solicitor.

This content applies to Scotland

Tenant serves notice to quit on the landlord

The tenant may serve a notice to quit on the landlord and will be entitled to leave the accommodation when the notice expires. [1] This notice must be of the duration specified by contract in relation to the protected tenancy (subject to the statutory minimum of 28 days). [2] If no duration was specified in the contract, then the notice must be at least three months long.

It should be noted, however, that even if a statutory tenant serves such a notice but continues to live in the accommodation after the end of the notice, the landlord must still obtain an order for possession before the tenant can be forced to leave. [3]

Landlord wishes to obtain possession

There are limited situations in which a tenant may be forced to leave by an order. The landlord must apply to the First Tier Tribunal Housing and Property Chamber for a possession order. Advisers should note that, when instigating a repossession action, the landlord must follow certain procedural requirements. The tribunal will only grant the order if one of the grounds of possession (called 'cases') is satisfied. These cases can be divided into two groups - discretionary and mandatory.

With the discretionary cases, the tribunal will only grant the order if the case is established and it is reasonable to grant the order or there is suitable alternative accommodation available. [4] Suitable alternative accommodation is defined in the legislation. [5] In short, the key factors in deciding whether accommodation is suitable are level of security of tenure and the appropriateness of the property to the needs of the tenant and their family. Alternative accommodation may include accommodation owned by the tenant. Where that accommodation is being let to a third party, the tribunal will be required to take into account how reasonable it would be for the tenant to take possession of the property. [6]

With mandatory cases, the tribunal will grant possession if the any of the cases set out in Part II of Schedule 2 of the 1984 Act are established. There is no reasonableness requirement. [7]

In certain circumstances, disabled tenants may be able to defend possession proceedings using the Disability Discrimination Act 1995. For more information, see the page on disability discrimination.

Last updated: 29 March 2022

Footnotes

  • [1]

    s.15(3) Rent (Scotland) Act 1984

  • [2]

    ss.15(4) and 112 Rent (Scotland) Act 1984

  • [3]

    sch.2 part 1 Case 5 Rent (Scotland) Act 1984

  • [4]

    s.11(1) Rent (Scotland) Act 1984

  • [5]

    sch.2 part IV Rent (Scotland) Act 1984

  • [6]

    Amrit Holdings Co. Ltd. v Shahbakhti [2005] HLR 30

  • [7]

    s.11(2) Rent (Scotland) Act 1984