Here is a question to the blog clinic from Barbara (not her real name):
Some individuals in our street are renting from a private landlord. They have been exhibiting antisocial behaviour across the neighbourhood but have recently gone as far as threatening violence (including a threat to kill) to one of our neighbours who have lived in the street for several decades.
The threat has been heard in court as a criminal charge but the people threatened have had to move out to temporary accommodation as they are in fear of their lives.
However, the antisocial neighbours are still not under any obligation to move and their landlord refuses to evict them. Is there anything we can do as a neighbourhood? The victims cannot sell their house as they would have to declare any problems with neighbours in a HIP.
This is a real problem and there is no easy solution.
The landlord is not bound to evict the tenants if he does not want to. There are good reasons why he might NOT want to during the fixed term of the tenancy as bringing eviction proceedings on anti social behaviour grounds can be expensive if the tenants defend (which they may well do).
The landlord cannot be liable himself for the actions of his tenants – unless perhaps he knowingly and maliciously installed antisocial tenants. But generally one person cannot be held legally liable for the acts of another.
If the neighbourhood got together and offered to fund a court claim for possession maybe the landlord could be persuaded to take action. However if the claim failed, note that you all might be liable to the tenants in costs (I doubt you would lose the cose but it has to be said).
Short of that, I am not sure what could be done. Does anyone have any ideas?