How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Nicola-mod Your Own Question

Nicola-mod, Moderator
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 9
Experience:  Moderator
Type Your Law Question Here...
Nicola-mod is online now

URGENT!!! I have just returned home from a stay in hospital

Customer Question

I have just returned home from a stay in hospital and my landlord has put a for sale sign in my garden and changed all the locks!!
I am a single mother, and ALL of my belongings are in the house!! And the kids.
I have had no notice to quit served on me or ANY court documents.
Can i change the locks back and go in for my belongings??
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Senior Partner replied 3 years ago.
How long were you away for ? What sort of tenancy do you have?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I have been in and out of the hospital for the last 8 weeks with crushed discs in my spine. My landlord knew of this and i had text him 2 or 3 times last week to let him know my family would be collecting my belongings as i am not able to be in the house without help due to my illness. i also asked him 3 times how much i had to pay him as my father would settle any bills when they collected my stuff and he replied saying he was in Barra at a relatives funeral and would speak to me when he got back! And that he hoped i was ok? I then got there today to find the locks changed!! and he has been in the house without my permission or knowing?? It is a short assured tenancy agreement. He asks for cash every month in hand. but i have had no court order telling me to leave.

Expert:  Senior Partner replied 3 years ago.

OK It is generally a criminal offence to evict without a court order and you can call the police and with their consent break back into the house and change the locks again. However if you are telling him you would not be living there and that you would settle any bills then could you have led him to believe you were not returning? Do you actually want to renter the premises? Have you continued to pay the rent whilst you were away? The landlord is entitled to enter the property provided he gives reasonable notice. If you were not there he could not really do that. Do you have a rent book? If you are paying cash you should have and should get it receipted every month

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

No, he knew i was going to be leaving this week due to my illness and that my family would be collecting my belongings this weekend and settling the past months rent with him on Monday. I have it all in text on my phone. He knew my familly were coming to collect my belongings and would not answer me when i asked how much i had left to pay. i asked 3 times over text. He has never given notice to enter and when i have returned from the hospital in the past it is obvious that he has been in as my mail has been stacked in the livingroom, and i drove in once to find him there? I think he wanted it in cash because he owes money to the taxman, i have aTenancy agreement but he has never given me a rentbook. He has never given me receipts either. I just want my belongings back as agreed and to pay him my last months rent but he wont answer my calls or texts.

Expert:  Senior Partner replied 3 years ago.
When you say you wanted to leave this week when did you tell him you were gong to leave? How much notice did you give?

It sounds as if he might well be able to argue that you said you were leaving and had abandoned the property. If it was absolutely clear that you were still within your tenancy and had paid the rent I would say you could legitimately get a locksmith to break in and change the locks again. You can risk that if you want but you may well be responsible for the costs of the locks. My cautious advice is to speak to the police first to avoid issues later. I would tell the landlord he has illegally evicted you and you will break in if he does not give you immediate access to get you belongings.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

No.. he knew i wouldnt be leaving until Tuesday. I still have it all on text. and the texts i kept sending asking what my final bill would be up to that date. I have kept them all.

Expert:  Senior Partner replied 3 years ago.
ok well he has clearly acted illegally in evicting you without a court order so you can reenter but i would call the police to assist. IF you just break in it may cause problems although it seems to be legally justified.
Expert:  Nicola-mod replied 3 years ago.

Just a quick reminder, there is an unrated answer waiting for you here from the Professional.

If the Expert was helpful, rating their answer as satisfactory transfers your deposit to them – this is how the Expert is compensated.

To rate your answer, you can go to your question page, and click one of the five faces below your Expert's answer. Please be sure you are logged in with your username and password or you will not be able to view or rate your answer.

If you still need help with your question, please feel free to reply to the Expert on this question page. You may ask as many follow-up questions on the same question page as you need until you are satisfied.

Thank you,

What Customers are Saying:

  • Thank you so much for your help. Your answers were really useful and came back so quickly. Great! Maggie
< Previous | Next >
  • Thank you so much for your help. Your answers were really useful and came back so quickly. Great! Maggie
  • A quick response, a succinct and helpful answer in simple English. I believe I can now confront the counter party with confidence -- worth the 30 bucks! Rick
  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C.
  • This expert is wonderful. They truly know what they are talking about, and they actually care about you. They really helped put my nerves at ease. Thank you so much!!!! Alex
  • Thank you for all your help. It is nice to know that this service is here for people like myself, who need answers fast and are not sure who to consult. GP
  • I couldn't be more satisfied! This is the site I will always come to when I need a second opinion. Justin
  • Just let me say that this encounter has been entirely professional and most helpful. I liked that I could ask additional questions and get answered in a very short turn around. Esther

Meet The Experts:

  • Jo C.

    Jo C.


    Satisfied Customers:

    Over 5 years in practice
< Last | Next >
  • Jo C.'s Avatar

    Jo C.


    Satisfied Customers:

    Over 5 years in practice
  • Ben Jones's Avatar

    Ben Jones

    UK Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
  • Buachaill's Avatar



    Satisfied Customers:

    Barrister 17 years experience
  • Max Lowry's Avatar

    Max Lowry


    Satisfied Customers:

    LLB, 10 years post qualification experience
  • UK_Lawyer's Avatar



    Satisfied Customers:

    I am a qualified solicitor and an expert in UK law.
  • Kasare's Avatar



    Satisfied Customers:

    Solicitor, 10 yrs plus experience in civil litigation, employment and family law
  • Joshua's Avatar



    Satisfied Customers:

    LL.B (Hons), Higher Prof. Dip. Law & Practice