What to do if tenant has forged tenancy agreement?

What to do if tenant has forged tenancy agreement?

0:02 AM, 27th February 2024, About 2 months ago 10

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Hello, I have a big issue as I recently discovered the tenant at my address has forged a tenancy agreement.

I’m looking at various options and wondering if I can evict using a Section 8 notice, if so what ground can I use? I’d like to add that the tenant is in arrears too but I wish to include the forged tenancy agreement.

Do any Property118 readers have any advice?

Thank you in advance,


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Steve Shepherd

10:30 AM, 27th February 2024, About 2 months ago

Firstly, did they gain any financial advantage by forging the tenancy agreement? If so, they have added the offence of Gaining a pecuniary advantage I think the phrase is. This is in addition to the fraud offences. I’d contact the local police and report it. I’m not sure how they would handle it but if you have definitive proof of fraud ( The forgery) then I’m assuming it has their details on it. Very difficult to refute solid evidence. You shouldn’t have to put up with this. Report it, get an incident number and date then submit that information with any eviction paperwork. Even if it’s taking time to process with the police, it’s actual, factual, relevant and true (As long as those criteria ALL apply) then it certainly sets some background to your reasons to evict. More knowledgeable people on here can advise you on the section 8 route but hopefully this can add some weight to your case.

I wish you the best of luck going forward.

LordOf TheManor

10:32 AM, 27th February 2024, About 2 months ago

Quick question: Do you have a hard copy of the original document signed by all parties to the contract?

Robert M

10:39 AM, 27th February 2024, About 2 months ago

Presumably you have a copy of the original (not forged) tenancy agreement, and will have had this completed either online (so there is an audit trail for the signing etc), or you (or your agent) met with the tenant face to face and got the AST signed and witnessed? In which case you would simply rely on the original AST?

If the tenant then produces a forged AST, then what sort of things would evidence that it is forged? For example, your signature? the witness's signature? evidence of photocopying? Do you have other examples of the tenants, and witness's signatures, e.g. copy of their passport for when you did the right to rent checks?

How do you even know that the tenant has forged an AST? Have you already taken legal action and they then produced the forged document?

Have you consulted with an eviction specialist, or a specialist solicitor?

There are so many variables that I think you need to sit down with a specialist legal adviser and show them ALL the documentation.

Reluctant Landlord

10:54 AM, 27th February 2024, About 2 months ago

S21 using the actual (real) agreement you have would surely be the way to go if all your other prescribed info etc was given correctly at the time. Best way to get him out asap. Then chase at a later stage for money owing?


14:19 PM, 27th February 2024, About 2 months ago

Robert M has raised all the necessary questions. If you serving eviction for backlog of rent arrears it's the original Contract you have that matters. It's perplexing to understand what the tenant is gaining from a forged tenancy agreement and why you think this is the case. Clearly a landlord/tenant breakdown so best you get them out as soon as.


17:39 PM, 27th February 2024, About 2 months ago

Hi, thanks for the replies. The tenant forged the whole document and even increased the rent, it looks nothing like my signature and the handwriting is a very poor example. The tenant sent it to me when I misplaced mine (still haven't been able to find it) the thing is I know her son and believe he may have pinched the original at some point. When I asked her where the original was she claimed she never had one, eventually she admitted in a text message she created the forged document because "she lost the original" without an original document there will be problems in proving the rent as she always underpaid by £100. Is there any clause in section 8 I could use with the fraudulent tenancy.
Thank you in advance

Simon F

21:13 PM, 27th February 2024, About 2 months ago

1. You definitely need a solicitors advice on this.
2. You need to know firstly if the text admission will stand up as evidence.
3. The increase in rent on the forged doc is in your favour at least.
4. You might do better using MCOL for the arrears than pursuing eviction if you don't have proper paperwork.
5. Solicitor wil be interested to know if gas safety certs, how to rent guides issued that would allow for Section 21 eviction. You can still use MCOL for the arrears.

LordOf TheManor

1:24 AM, 28th February 2024, About 2 months ago

Is the tenant claiming or wanting to claim housing benefit?

If so, that could be the reason for the re-creation of the tenancy agreement. As the LHA rate has increased from April, the higher rent used on the replicated agreement could be a way of the tenant claiming more benefit soon.

Only guessing... because I can't think of any other reason for a tenant to issue themselves a fake agreement!

Michael Crofts

15:35 PM, 29th February 2024, About 2 months ago

You LOST your copy of a tenancy agreement? Not just the hard copy but your backup scan as well? Crikey. After 60 years in the business I have never heard of that happening before except in fires and usually such documents are in fireproof safes. And she has lost her copy too? Presumably she found out you'd lost yours before she forged hers?

Can you negotiate a new Tenancy Agreement (do not backdate it, that is unlawful) and start again? If so you should get advice from a solicitor who understands this stuff (speak to Dutton Gregory if you don't already have a competent solicitor). Perhaps suggest that the new Agreement should have a preliminary clause: 'Whereas a previous Tenancy Agreement for a [fixed term/periodic tenancy] commencing [date] was made between the Landlord and the Tenant, and the Tenant has been in possession of the [property] under that previous Agreement, but all written records of that previous Agreement have been lost, it is now agreed that (1) the Tenant hereby gives Notice to the Landlord that the Tenant wishes to terminate the previous Agreement, and (b) the landlord accepts the Tenant's Notice and waives any requirement for the Notice to expire after any particular period of time, and (c) this Agreement shall take effect as a new Tenancy Agreement on the date hereof and subject to the terms hereinafter provided.'

I think those words, or others to the same effect, would comply with the statutory Notice requirements and obviate the requirement for a deed of surrender of the previous Agreement, but you do need proper advice, not just a comment on a forum.

Judith Wordsworth

11:26 AM, 2nd March 2024, About 2 months ago

S8 ground 17.

Absolutely ridiculous that this a a discretionary ground. Ought to be mandatory ground for possession

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