My colleague Robin Stewart, has written recently about the new provisions in the Immigration Act 2016 which will come into force on 1 December 2016. A summary by me of the new provisions by me can be found here.

There are some new and important provisions regarding eviction. The Secretary of State will now be able to serve a notice on a landlord which informs them that some or all of the occupiers in a property do not have a right to rent. If such a notice is served then the landlord will be placed under an obligation to take steps within a reasonable time to evict those tenants.

There is formal guidance on what is meant by a “reasonable time”. In general, landlords who cannot agree with their tenants that they should leave within four weeks will need to take further formal action to pursue eviction. There are other time periods for other events. The guidance is already published in draft form and it is not expected to change before being finalised.

Where the secretary of state has served a notice or notices which inform the landlord that all the occupiers of a property have no right to rent then the landlord may serve a notice to end the tenancy in a prescribed form. Once it expires the tenant has no right to be in the property and can be evicted by the landlord without needing to obtain a court order. This prescribed notice has been published and is found as a schedule to the Immigration (Residential Accommodation) (Termination of Residential Tenancy Agreements) (Guidance etc.) Regulations 2016.

Where the notice from the secretary of state only specifies that some of the occupiers do not have a right to rent then the landlord must still go to court for possession. This is made possible for Assured and Assured Shorthold tenancies by a new ground for possession in Schedule II of the Housing Act 1988, this is ground 7B. Ground 7B can be used with the new form of section 8 notice which also comes into effect on 1 December. This ground must give not less than two weeks notice.

The creation of the new ground for possession means that a new form of section 8 notice will come into effect in England only from 1 December and this will need to be used in any case where a section 8 notice is being served. The new form of notice can be found as a schedule to the Assured Tenancies and Agricultural Occupancies (Forms) (England) (Amendment No. 2) Regulations 2016.

Anthony Gold is holding a seminar on 13 December to discuss the new changes and the new eviction process. More details on this and the method of booking can be found here.