Changes to your tenancy

Changes to your family and employment can happen at any time. Here are some frequently asked questions for when they do.

Q. Am I allowed to work abroad or away from home?

A. Yes but you must inform your estate office of your plans and continue to pay your rent, while keeping to the conditions of your tenancy. This means that your council home must be your main or only home. You are not allowed to sublet the whole of your flat to anyone else. If you do not let the estate office know that you have gone away and they do not hear from you, they may believe that your home has been abandoned and serve a notice to end your tenancy.

Q. I am an elderly tenant living with other family members and I am worried about what will happen to them when I die. Will they have to move out?

A.

For secure tenants whose tenancy started before 1 April 2012
The tenancy can be passed to a partner or another family member if they are able to meet the legal requirements. This is called succession. Only one succession is allowed to a tenancy. There are some rules we have to follow when someone wants to succeed to the tenancy. These rules also say if the successor can stay in the same property. These are some of the most important rules:

  • If a sole tenant dies, your married partner or registered civil partner can succeed to the tenancy and can stay in the same property.
  • A non-married partner, same sex couple living together as civil partners or another family member can succeed to the tenancy if they can prove that they have lived there for the 12 months before the death of the tenant as their only or main home. They will however have to move if the property is larger than they reasonably need.

For secure tenants and flexible tenants whose tenancy started after 1 April 2012
The tenancy can be passed to a married partner, registered civil partner or non-married partners if they are able to meet the legal requirements. Only one succession is allowed to a tenancy. There is no legal right for family members to succeed to the tenancy.

There are some rules we have to follow when someone wants to succeed to the tenancy. These rules also say if the successor can stay in the same property. These are some of the most important rules:

  • If you are a joint tenant, your surviving joint tenant will succeed to the tenancy and can stay in the same property.
  • If a sole tenant dies, your married partner or registered civil partner can succeed to the tenancy and can stay in the same property.
  • A non-married partner or same sex couple living together as civil partners can succeed to the tenancy if they can prove that they have lived with the tenant for the 12 months before their death and the property is their only or main home. They will however have to move if the property is larger than they reasonably need.


Discretionary succession policy
The council allows some additional family members to succeed to a tenancy in limited circumstances. Please check the council’s tenancy policy for the current rules on discretionary succession.


Q. I’m finding it hard to manage my tenancy. Can a family member take over my tenancy?

A. If a family member takes over your tenancy while you are still living in the property, this is known as an assignment. You may be able to transfer your tenancy to someone who would succeed if you died. You need our written permission to assign your tenancy and we will not give permission where it would result in under-occupation.


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