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Preparing for your eviction hearing

This advice applies to England

You’ll get court papers that tell you when your case will be looked at - this is called a ‘possession hearing’. It’ll also tell you where you need to go for it.

The court will use the hearing to decide if you need to leave your home. They’ll give your landlord a ‘possession order’ if you need to leave - this means your landlord can evict you.

It’s really important that you go to your court hearing - even if you haven’t sent your defence form. It’s your chance to explain to the court why you should be allowed to stay in your home. Even if you have to leave, they might let you stay in your home for longer.

If you've sent your defence form and you don't go to the hearing, the court could just rely on the evidence your landlord has given them.

If the court decides you have to leave, you’ll usually have 14 days before you need to move out.

If you’re an introductory or demoted council tenant, the court is unlikely to let you stay in your home if your landlord has followed the correct process.

Contact your nearest Citizens Advice if you’re going to be evicted or you’re worried about going to court. An adviser might be able to help you build your case or find you free legal help.

You should visit your nearest Citizens Advice for help preparing for court. They might be able to find you legal aid or represent you in court.

You can also get a solicitor to represent you instead. It’s likely to be expensive, but you might be able to get legal aid to help you cover the cost. Find out if you can get help with legal costs on GOV.UK.

You might be able to get free legal advice on the day of the hearing instead. You can ask the court before the hearing date for details of what help you can get on the day.

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UAT (Release)