New Prescribed Section 21 Form

In this part of our ‘1 October 2015 changes’ series we look at a new “prescribed form” which must be used for serving a section 21 notice in England.

The Assured Shorthold Tenancy Notices and Prescribed Requirements (England) Regulations 2015 commence on 1 October 2015 and only apply to a section 21 being served where the dwelling is located in England. These regulations contain a new “prescribed form” for the purpose of new sub-sections 21(8) and (9) Housing Act 1988 inserted by section 37 Deregulation Act 2015.

When the prescribed form was first published under the above regulations, the form contained some serious legal errors. The form was therefore changed just before October 2015 by the The Assured Shorthold Tenancy Notices and Prescribed Requirements (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2015. Those regulations contain the current prescribed form at the time of writing and is what we use for our possession notice wizard.

Subject to the next paragraph, the new prescribed form is only required (and only suitable) where an assured shorthold tenancy was granted on or after 1 October 2015 including a written renewal on or after that date. The new form does not apply where an assured shorthold tenancy becomes a statutory periodic tenancy on or after 1 October 2015 where the original fixed term tenancy was granted before the 1 October 2015.

From 1 October 2018, the new section 21 prescribed form discussed in this article should be used for ALL assured shorthold tenancies in England including any that were granted before 1 October 2015 (or went statutory periodic). It may be that this is not legally required from 1 October 2018 for ASTs granted before 1 October 2015 but there will be no disadvantage to a landlord from using the new form. Please see this article for full details.

The new prescribed form is the same for both a section 21(1) (service during fixed term) and section 21(4) (service during periodic). This can be accomplished because of the removal in England of the requirement to expire the notice on any particular date.

The new section 21 prescribed form (titled ‘form 6A’) is fairly straightforward and has a similar feel to the section 8 notice which is already prescribed.

The front page is entirely made up of notes explaining the new notice. All of the points contained in the notes are dealt with in this series of posts about the 1 October changes. The following information is to be entred onto the notice:

  • tenant names
  • date of expiry (when possession is being sought)
  • landlords name and address
  • signature and details of the signatory and the date.

Our possession notice guidance has been updated accordingly with new versions of the section 21 notice and section 8 notice in England with further adaptations made for Wales as there is now effectively a different section 21 notice for England and Wales.