Q&As

A Section 21 Notice in relation to an AST is addressed to only one of the two tenants named on the tenancy agreement. Is service on one joint tenant sufficient to commence court action?

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Published on LexisPSL on 14/06/2016

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  • A Section 21 Notice in relation to an AST is addressed to only one of the two tenants named on the tenancy agreement. Is service on one joint tenant sufficient to commence court action?

A Section 21 Notice in relation to an AST is addressed to only one of the two tenants named on the tenancy agreement. Is service on one joint tenant sufficient to commence court action?

An assured shorthold tenancy (AST) with the protection of the Housing Act 1988 (HA 1988) can only be brought to an end by the landlord by a court order following the service of a notice alleging a breach of its terms, or by a notice under HA 1988, s 21. This question raises the issue of how such a notice should be served.

HA 1988, s 21 envisages that notices can be served to take effect in two circumstances: following the end of a fixed contractual term or during a periodic tenancy. In each case, it is provided that to make the possession order the court must be satisfied that 'the landlord or, in the case of joint landlords, at least one of them has given to the tenant not less than two months' notice in writing'. It is necessary therefore to consider the requirements of the section.

It is quite common for more than one person to be either a tenant or landlord of a property. Either they will together be defined as 'the tenant' or 'the landlord' as the case may be, or they will each separately be named as 'the

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