Notice and eviction documents
Notice is the period of time that a landlord or tenant/s have to give in order to end a tenancy. The length of notice to be given depends on how long the tenancy is for. For instance, if you have an assured tenancy then the length of notice required is as follows:
- If your tenancy lasts for more than four months, the minimum notice period is 40 days.
- If your tenancy lasts for four months or less, the notice period should be at least one third of the length of the tenancy, and no less than 28 days.
Notice to Quit
Notice to Quit is the document that a landlord has to give tenants when informing them that the tenancy is coming to an end. A Notice to Quit has to contain certain ‘prescribed information’, if it does not include this it will be invalid.
Notice of Proceedings / AT6 form
If a landlord wants to end a tenancy before the term ends, in addition to a Notice to Quit, a landlord must also send tenants a Notice of Proceedings (called an AT6 form). This can be sent at the same time as the Notice to Quit, or at a later date. If the two notices are sent at the same time, the notice periods will run at the same time.
A Notice of Proceedings (AT6) is a document that tells tenants under what ground their landlord wants to start legal proceedings. There are 17 different grounds that a landlord can use to try to have a tenant evicted. The length of notice (either two weeks or two months) will depend on the ground that is being used. The notice, in terms of an AT6 form, is the amount of time that has to pass before the landlord can start proceedings at the sheriff court and not the amount of time that a tenant has to leave the property.
Section 33 notice (short assured tenancies)
As well as giving tenants a Notice to Quit, landlords must also give tenants two months' written notice telling them that they want the property back. This is called a Section 33 notice. If the landlord wants the tenant to move out on the day the tenancy expires, they will need to give the tenants a Section 33 notice at least two months before that date. Landlords can combine a Notice to Quit and a Section 33 notice so that it comes as one notice. This is ok as long as it:
- Gives tenants at least two months' notice
- States that the landlord requires possession of the property
- States that once the notice has run out, the landlord still has to get an order from the court before the tenants have to leave
- Include information about where tenants can get advice.
Some landlords give tenants the Section 33 notice at the beginning of the tenancy. However, this is not good practice.
Section 11 notices
If a landlord wants to evict a tenant via going to court then they must inform the council, in writing, that they're planning on taking this course of action, this is called a section 11 notice.