Trespassers and Squatters

Trespassing is when someone enters a property without the necessary permission. Trespass can take different forms such as:

  • Leaving unwanted property on someone else’s land;
  • Encroaching on a neighbour’s land in a boundary dispute;
  • Squatting when someone enters private property without permission in order to live there.

Squatting gives property owners cause for concern. Unwanted occupants constitute a nuisance and may inflict damage on the building. If they settle for over 10 years, they may take control of the land and even apply for ownership through adverse possession.

boss sitting in office

I am a Partner at Naylor Solicitors, a law firm specialising in property disputes and resolution. I would be delighted to assist with any queries you may have. Please get in touch to arrange a no obligation consultation.

James Naylor
Partner

Can you remove squatters by force?

It is a criminal offence to use, or threaten to use, violence to gain entry to a property. The safest approach is to obtain a court order to remove squatters.

How do I remove squatters from my property?

There are two routes to recovering possession:

  1. A claim for possession of property

    The possession proceedings procedure must be used to remove squatters. Although there is a specific trespasser procedure, it is the same process used to evict a tenant.

    Following a hearing, the court will make an order for possession requiring the squatters to vacate the property by a specified date.

    If the squatters refuse to do so, the property owner will need to apply for either:

    • A warrant for possession to instruct bailiffs to evict the squatters; or
    • A writ for possession to instruct High Court Enforcement Officers to evict the squatters (this may result in a quicker eviction).

    If used alone (without the IPO), this procedure allows for a claim for damages to be made against the squatters.

  2. An interim possession order (IPO);

    In combination with an application for possession, a property owner can apply for an IPO. This provides a specific procedure to quickly remove squatters.

    An application for an IPO can be made if the property owner takes action within 28 days of finding out about the squatters.

    If successful, the IPO will usually be granted within a few days. After being served with an IPO, the squatters must leave the property within 24 hours. If they fail to do so, they can be arrested.

    Although the IPO provides for a speedier route, it does not allow for a property owner to make a claim for damages against the squatters.

    It is important you act fast and evict squatters as a matter of urgency. We can assist with the IPO, the claim for possession and/or damages, as well as providing expert legal advice about your rights and restrictions in your particular case.

Can I prevent someone from trespassing?

If there is a threatened trespass, it may be possible to seek a quiet timet injunction to prevent the trespass entirely.

A property owner can rely on evidence of a threat, by way of an example, as any of the following

  • Intimidation or an aggressive atmosphere towards the property owner or others;
  • A risk of the trespassers being willing to break criminal law;
  • A need to keep the trespassers away from parts of the property for their own safety.

Evidence in support of an application might include, for example, video evidence and social media posts and activity.

We can help you obtain a quiet timet injunction to prevent a trespass from happening.

We’re with you, every step of the way.

We’re here to guide you through the intricacies of litigation, resolve disputes efficiently, and help you achieve your outcome.

Testimonials

Our team is composed of dedicated and accomplished legal professionals, each bringing their unique expertise to the table.

Violeta Korkucyte
Violeta Korkucyte
21/05/2024
I am very happy with the service provided by Dominika Libova who helped me out with both my housing and allotment issues. Dominika was very professional, knowledgeable and understanding. I am grateful for all support and understanding received. I highly recommend Dominika and I will certainly continue using Naylor Solicitors services, should again there will be any need. Thank you so much! Kind regards, Violeta Korkucyte
Xuan Xing
Xuan Xing
06/05/2024
I used Naylor as my solicitor in my possesion claim case. It was very complicated due to a rent-to-rent and defaulting agent case with changing solicitors in the past. Jenny and Dominika provided top-notch services along the way and helped me finally regained the property. They gave legal advices truly in client's interest and explained things in details. I would highly recommend you using them esp. when you face a complicated case.
shaz
shaz
15/04/2024
Hi, My landlord posted an arrears repayment request letter (for my commercial property) to my old residential address where I haven't lived for over 20 years. To make things worse, some of my estranged family out of spite 'sat on the letter and never told me'. When my sick father found out he told me but by that time it was too late and my landlord had then tried 'to dig up a old expired lease clause' to evict me instead. I contacted the landlord and instructed Naylors to help me, as I have used them previously without any problems. I had an excellent service and outcome before and this time felt I was in very safe hands. However my landlord served me a 'forfeiture of lease and claimed repossession. Distraught Naylors saved the day and I am delighted, relieved and very grateful to say the landlord has given my keys back to me today, (within 48hrs of Naylors contacting them on my behalf) and I am back in my shop. Thank you so so much James, Jonathan, Jasper, Gurcharan and the whole team at Naylors, you guys are fantastic! keep up the amazing work. best wishes shabana x
Relinda Howard
Relinda Howard
04/04/2024
I take this opportunity of thanking Dominika for her expertise and professionalism. She certainly made my experience of this situation more pleasant . She appears to be a person of strength and determination. When it is time to be firm she can be. Thanks for her perseverance in completing what she started. Relinda.
Mark Genney
Mark Genney
22/03/2024
I have to say Naylor went the extra mile, my case must have lasted 5 years or so. I'm very happy with the amount of professionalism and talent that Naylor brought to this.
BB Roy
BB Roy
12/03/2024
This specialist, yet unassuming Property Law firm came to my rescue by evicting a tenant in my property who was illegally subletting. At the outset, the principal of the firm - James Naylor set out a very clear forthright approach to get the tenants out by a given date. Then it was all up to a very high impact Solicitor Nida Khan to execute that plan. Nida was diligent and persistent in her manner with the tenants and left them with little scope to manoeuvre other than to surrender the tenancy by the specified date or to face imminent eviction by court orders. Through out the two week's process - Nida kept me informed, was easy to communicate with and was always reassuring. I am very grateful to Naylor's LLP for their professional service and happy to recommend Nida and her firm as outstanding property law practitioners.
Nurliah Fisher
Nurliah Fisher
21/02/2024
I would like to thanks to all the staff at Naylor Solicitors. They are all very helpful and the most important is for me that’s they are very honest. Wishing them all the best and success with their team work and especially to Dominika, Many thanks for your hard work. Best wishes Nurliah Fisher
Mustafa Kalaycı
Mustafa Kalaycı
21/01/2024
The most honest, hardworking, and fully professional law firm I have encountered or worked with. Despite speaking different languages, they effectively understand you through their interpreters, find the best advisors to assist you, and acquire the necessary information. They create a friendly, family-like atmosphere with a straightforward approach, particularly in litigation expertise. My gratitude goes to all the staff involved, especially James Naylor and Jenny Cheung, for their dedication. Thanks for everything. Mustafa KALAYCI
Pauline
Pauline
12/09/2023
I used Naylor Solicitors to help us purchase our freehold. It wasn't as straightforward as we'd hoped as the previous freeholder and his solicitors were difficult to deal with (not responding to calls or emails etc,) which delayed things. At one point the freeholder threatened to pull out of the sale despite previously agreeing. Our solicitor Adam was swift in his response, reminding the other side that we had a verbal agreement and that they were risking us taking legal action in that regard. He was then able to make sure the sale went through as agreed. I highly recommend Naylor Solicitors.
Ray Allen
Ray Allen
26/04/2023
We have used their services twice and both times we found them to be efficient and responsive. Kept us well informed of all developments throughout the process.