Q&As

A rents a domestic garage to B. There is no tenancy agreement, but rent is paid monthly. Rent has not been paid for over a year, a notice to quit has been served but not complied with, and the garage remains full of B’s possessions. Can A simply take back possession of the garage or is a court order required, and does the procedure under the Torts (Interference with Goods) Act 1977 procedure have to be followed in respect of the goods?

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Produced in partnership with Alexander Campbell of Field Court Chambers
Published on LexisPSL on 16/05/2019

The following Property Disputes Q&A produced in partnership with Alexander Campbell of Field Court Chambers provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • A rents a domestic garage to B. There is no tenancy agreement, but rent is paid monthly. Rent has not been paid for over a year, a notice to quit has been served but not complied with, and the garage remains full of B’s possessions. Can A simply take back possession of the garage or is a court order required, and does the procedure under the Torts (Interference with Goods) Act 1977 procedure have to be followed in respect of the goods?
  • Taking back possession of a garage
  • Dealing with goods left behind in the garage

A rents a domestic garage to B. There is no tenancy agreement, but rent is paid monthly. Rent has not been paid for over a year, a notice to quit has been served but not complied with, and the garage remains full of B’s possessions. Can A simply take back possession of the garage or is a court order required, and does the procedure under the Torts (Interference with Goods) Act 1977 procedure have to be followed in respect of the goods?

Taking back possession of a garage

Where a landlord has let a dwelling such as a house or a flat, they are not entitled to take back possession of the premises other than by court proceedings where the tenant is still in occupation. This is by virtue of sections 2 and 3 of the Protection from Eviction Act 1977 (PEA 1977).

PEA 1977, s 2 states:

‘Where any premises are let as a dwelling on a lease which is subject to a right of re-entry or forfeiture it shall not be lawful to enforce that right otherwise than by proceedings in the court while any person is lawfully residing in the premises or part of them.’

PEA 1977, s 3(1) states:

‘Where any premises have been let as a dwelling under a tenancy which is neither a statutorily protected tenancy nor an excluded tenancy and—

(a) the tenancy (in

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