Evictions: domestic abuse and anti-social behaviour cases prioritised

The housing minister says the resumption of eviction possession court cases at the end of next month must be done in such a way to priorities cases involving domestic abuse and anti-social behaviour.

There are fears that the backlog of cases built up during the Coronavirus eviction ban, plus the possible slower process required for court proceedings because of the virus, may lead to substantial delays.

But minister Chris Pincher, in a written answer in the House of Commons, has made it clear that “landlords and tenants have appropriate access to justice in cases that are not related to COVID-19, such as cases of anti-social behaviour and longstanding cases that pre-date lockdown measures being put in place”.

In response to a question by Labour MP Helen Hayes, Pincher confirmed once again that the ban would be lifted on August 23.

Pincher’s answer continues: “Landlords must follow strict procedures if they want  to gain possession of their  property, depending on the type of tenancy agreement in place and the terms of it.

“The government has also been working closely with the judiciary, legal representatives, the advice sector and housing sector stakeholders through a working group convened by the Master of the Rolls.

“This group is considering arrangements that will mean that courts are better able to address the need for appropriate protection of all parties in the current legislative framework once the suspension of proceedings ends.”

More details of new procedures for how possession cases are heard are expected to be revealed shortly.

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