Protection for tenants
The Coronavirus (Scotland) Act 2020 is an emergency law to protect renters in Scotland during coronavirus.
The law protects tenants from eviction, where a landlord issues a notice on or after 7 April 2020.
Before a landlord can start legal proceedings to evict, they must give the tenant notice. In most cases, the temporary law means landlords must give you at least 6 months' notice to end a tenancy.
For some cases it is 28 days. Those cases must use one of these reasons:
- you have a relevant criminal conviction
- you have engaged in relevant antisocial behaviour
- someone that you chose to spend time with in the rented property has a relevant criminal conviction or has engaged in relevant antisocial behaviour
- you are no longer living at the rented property
This law ended on 31 March 2022 and is not being extended.
If you're unable to pay your rent
If you are able to pay rent as normal you must continue to do so. If you are unable to pay the full amount, you should pay as much of your rent as you can.
Your local council may be able to help if you're in arrears or at risk of eviction.
You may also be able to get financial support, such as:
- Universal Credit
- Discretionary Housing Payment
- help from a local council through the Scottish Welfare Fund
Citizen's Advice Scotland has information and advice if you are experiencing financial difficulties because of coronavirus.
The Scottish Government has also called on all social sector landlords (councils, housing associations and housing co-ops) not to evict a tenant because they have suffered financial hardship. We expect landlords to be flexible with tenants facing financial hardship and signpost them to the sources of financial support available.
If you think that you may still have problems paying your rent even with these sources of support, you should speak to your landlord about this as soon as possible.
If your landlord issues you with a 'Notice of Recovery of Possession', it's important to know your rights.
Most tenants in social rented housing have a Scottish secure tenancy agreement.
Some tenants have a short Scottish secure tenancy agreement.
You may wish to get help and advice if your landlord is trying to evict you.
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