Eviction & Repossession

The words ‘eviction’ and ‘repossession’ both refer to a procedure whereby the occupier of premises is removed from those premises by another party, usually someone with an interest in the premises, e.g. a landlord or a mortgage lender.

This section of the RLC website is concerned with residential premises only, i.e. a person’s home. It is not concerned with commercial premises, e.g. shops, offices and other business premises, as RLC does not undertake commercial cases.

The word ‘eviction’ is usually used to refer to premises that the occupier rents from a landlord. On the other hand, the word ‘repossession’ is usually used to refer to premises that the occupier owns, albeit perhaps subject to a mortgage.

Other words for ‘eviction’ and ‘repossession’ include ‘removal’, ‘ejection’ and ‘recovery of possession’.

Other words for premises include ‘heritable property’, ‘dwellinghouse’, ‘flatted dwellinghouse’, ‘accommodation’, ‘subjects of let’, ‘security subjects’, and of course, ‘house’, ‘flat’ and ‘home’.

There are many reasons why a landlord, a mortgage lender or another interested party might wish to remove the occupier of premises. By far the most common reason is money, i.e. the occupier is alleged to have failed to pay money due such as rent, mortgage payments or other similar charges.

However, generally speaking the law only allows an occupier to be removed by force if the other party obtains a court order for eviction or repossession (otherwise known as a ‘decree’). Moreover, there is often a legal remedy open to the occupier to stop eviction or repossession.

This section looks at various forms of residential occupancy in Scotland, the procedures used to apply for eviction or repossession, and the remedies available to occupiers facing such a crisis.

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