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Tenant wins £18,000 in first-of-its-kind tribunal decision

A tenant is thought to be the first ever to have been awarded damages under new Scottish lettings legislation.

Dambaru Baral was awarded £18,000 by the First-tier Tribunal from Scotland Housing and Property Chamber after it was found he was unlawfully evicted back in 2015.

He raised the case in September 2018 against his landlords Mohammed and Khalda Arif who removed him from his occupancy under an assured tenancy.


A representative of the landlords entered the property, removed the tenant’s belongings and changed the locks due to the tenant being in rent arrears; however, there had been no warning and no prior attempt to terminate the tenancy.

At an earlier hearing it was established that the representative had taken possession of the property without a court order, claiming that he believed or had reasonable cause to believe that the tenant had ceased to occupy the let property.

The Tribunal rejected this defence, stating: “Mr Arif and Mr Bhatti accepted that they had gone to the flat and filled a number of cardboard boxes with the applicant’s belongings. 

“The record taken by City Building, as indicated at paragraph 30 above, was that there were seven boxes. It is also apparent, from the photographs taken by the applicant, that there were items on top of the boxes. 

“On any reasonable view, the sheer volume of the applicant’s belongings at the tenancy were not such as to indicate that he had ceased occupation.”

The Tribunal concluded that an unlawful eviction had taken place and awarded damages of £18,000 based on a surveyor’s reports.

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    Good job it's in Scotland would not have happened down here in the south. No rent no tenancy simple rules

    Ingrid Mott

    Steve we down here would not get away with it. The rules are very strict. We must get a court order and put up with the abuse....much as it is ridiculous and unfair.. the law favours the tenant, who can legally get away with it. I know!

  • PossessionFriendUK PossessionFriend

    We have Rent Repayment Orders in England, also, the possibility for the Tenant to bring a Civil claim for damages.

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    • G W
    • 21 January 2020 14:40 PM

    This was a good decision.

    Nobody should have the right to arbitrarily dump someones belongings onto the street.

    • 21 January 2020 15:19 PM

    Totally and utterly disagree!!
    If you haven't paid the FULL CONTRACTUALLY DUE RENT by the end of the 1st day of the 2nd rental month then a LL should be perfectly entitled to remove a tenant and all belongings throwing them on the street if necessary if the tenant has failed to vacate and remove their belongings.
    Police assistance for the LL to prevent a breach of the peace should be used.
    In Australia police remove tenants 14 days after first rent default
    Consequently most rent defaulting tenants are long gone by the time the LL turns up to remove them...............................funny that!
    Almost as though the tenant is behaving correctly by vacating as they are no longer prepared for WHATEVER reasons to pay due rent.

    I wonder if such an EXCELLENT eviction policy would work in the UK!!??
    Perhaps many more LL would be prepared to let to those who are currently unable to source a LL who will take them on as they won't currently for all the obvious reasons.
    Perhaps Councils would ensure LL were paid rent that the tenant may have squandered elsewhere.
    Councils would be desperate to prevent rent defaulters from turning up at their offices 1 month and 1 day after not paying their due rent.
    Perhaps the Treasury would notice an uplift in LL tax receipts as LL wouldn't be subject to the average £9 billion of losses caused in most part by rent defaulting tenants.
    Perhaps such timely removal of wrongun tenants will induce a change in tenant behaviour and therefore to behave in a ' tenant like manner' as prescribed by Lord Denning.
    Perhaps lenders and insurers would remove their prejudiced conditions against those on welfare if rent defaulters could be removed very quickly with NO Court action involved.
    Obviously if any LL professed that a tenant had rent defaulted and it was found this wasn't the case that LL to be prosecuted for wrongful eviction.
    Yep I can see very good reasons for arbitrarily throwing a rent defaulting tenant and possessions out on the street.
    Of course no way will the UK adopt the very practical Oz eviction strategy as it is far too sensible for the UK.
    So the UK PRS will continue to shrink ever more as the eviction process becomes ever more hassle resulting in even more homeless former tenants.
    Well done dopey UK Govt and Councils..................NOT!!!!!!!!!!!


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