Lockout threat

Note: tenancy law changed on 23rd March 2020. All our factsheets are up to date, but sample letters are still under review.

You can use this letter when the landlord, their agent, or another person has threatened to illegally evict you. This may be by changing the locks or forcing you out in some other way.

Cut and paste the template letter below or download a copy from the link above. Remember to substitute your details for the details contained in [square brackets].

[Your name and address]


[Landlord’s or agent’s name and address]

Dear …

Re: Threat of lockout at [your address]

[On the phone yesterday] you threatened to evict me from my home by changing the locks on the doors to stop me entering the premises.

I have sought advice from [name of Tenants Advice and Advocacy Service].

Locking out a tenant is illegal. It is an offence under section 120 (1) of the Residential Tenancies Act 2010 to recover possession of residential premises, unless you have a warrant issued by a court or the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal. A landlord who does so, and any person assisting them, faces a penalty of up to $22,000.

In addition, under section 187(1)(d) of the Residential Tenancies Act 2010 the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal may order that the landlord pay compensation to a dispossessed tenant.

If you make further threats, I will be seeking orders from the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal regarding this matter.

Yours sincerely

[T Tenant]