How to evict a tenant in prison?

How to evict a tenant in prison?

19:25 PM, 26th January 2015, About 9 years ago 10

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My tenant was arrested ( I was told by his employer) and now he is in prison. However, I am not able to get any info about where he is held and for what crime he was arrested.  How to evict a tenant in prison?

He isn’t British but has a permanent visa for staying in UK.

I do not have any other contacts for him.

I sent a request through government website “find a prisoner”, but did not get any reply.

On the website it says the prisoners have right not to give their permissions for their information to be shared.

How can I evict him and serve him notice or court order if I don’t know where he is?

He is more than one month behind payment

Anyone can help please?


Yi Zhang

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Mark Alexander - Founder of Property118

19:28 PM, 26th January 2015, About 9 years ago

Hello Yi

Look up a company called "Trace A Debt", they operate a very competitive people tracing service which operates on a "no-Trace-No-Fee" basis.

When you have tracked the tenant down I suggest you take a look at this website which is a sister site to Property118 >>

Good luck 🙂

Ian Ringrose

11:59 AM, 27th January 2015, About 9 years ago

I see no reason why you can’t send a notice to the last address you have for him. Most AST say you can send a notice by post to the property address.

But personally I would be on the phone to Landlord Action for advice… (Or the NLA if you are a member.)

John Frith

20:24 PM, 27th January 2015, About 9 years ago

Have you asked the police to pass him a message? I don't know the law, but I could imagine that they might let you talk to his solicitor.

Was the tenant getting housing benefit? If so you might ask them to pass messages.

When this happened to me three years ago, I was advised that if the tenant is on remand, housing benefit can still be paid for up to 13 weeks.

Yi Zhang

22:16 PM, 27th January 2015, About 9 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "John Frith" at "27/01/2015 - 20:24":

John, thanks for your reply! I reported him missing and later I was told by the local missing Dept that he is safe and well, but they refuse to tell me any more info. The rest of info on his file is blocked access according to the lady I spoke to on the phone. He was full-time employed and was not getting housing benefit. Any suggestion where and how can I find out his solicitor ?

John Frith

23:43 PM, 27th January 2015, About 9 years ago

If it was me, I would try talking to the police at the police station most local to where he lived. If they know of his arrest, they will know which lawyer he was assigned, to deal with his defence.

Mandy Thomson

11:00 AM, 28th January 2015, About 9 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Ian Ringrose" at "27/01/2015 - 11:59":


I agree with your advice about service of the notice. The AST stipulates the address, and when, as here, the party serving has no way of knowing of any other address to serve the notice, the one on the AST should be used, especially as it is the last known address in this case

I would be inclined to get a proof of postage certificate from the Post Office, rather than use recorded delivery, as this needs someone to be there and willing to receive the letter. Also, for all we know, the tenant has set up a mail forwarding service or arranged for someone to pass on mail.

I came across an article yesterday where a naturalised British citizen had his citizenship stripped while he was out of the country - even though the Home Office could have emailed him or contacted him on his mobile as well, they chose only to serve notice on him at his home address.

If serving written notice by post at an unoccupied address is considered sufficient by the government, surely it's enough to end a tenancy (especially considering the tenant already has another roof over his head...).

Ian Ringrose

11:06 AM, 28th January 2015, About 9 years ago

But you then get the costs of the court case, and sending in the high court enforcement officer.

If you can contact the tenant as well, they may agree to give up the tenancy saving you these costs.

So I would do BOTH, try to trace AND post notice to the property.

Kim Wilson

16:13 PM, 28th January 2015, About 9 years ago

Cant you just go in change locks and display an Abandonment Notice for 28 days???

18:46 PM, 2nd February 2015, About 9 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Mandy Thomson" at "28/01/2015 - 16:20":

I'm no legal expert but I guess it will all come down to what is reasonable.

I agree that non occupation doesn't necessarily indicate abandonment but non occupation together with non payment of rent without any explanation would indicate it to most reasonable people especially after a reasonable time.

Although he is in prison he knows that his rent is no longer being paid and therefore he knows that his tenancy is in jeopardy. He knows that after a period of time it would be reasonable for any Landlord to assume abandonment. I'm pretty sure he is still able to get a message to you if he wishes either directly, via solicitor, friend etc, and by choosing not to do this he is being unreasonable.

Make all reasonable attempts to contact him via employer, police, friends etc and keep records. If he misses 2 rent payments without contacting you should do what you genuinely feel is reasonable given all the circumstances.

After 2 missed payments I'd stick up a 14 day abandonment notice, also photo it and email it to the police reminding them that they have duty of care responsibilities and also need to act reasonably.

good luck

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