Oxford City Council

PO Box 10, Oxford, OX1 1EN
Tel 01865 249811
Web http://www.oxford.gov.uk/


Tenancy transfer on death

Who can take over a tenancy?

The law covering succession to a tenancy was changed under the Localism Act and the tenancy agreement amendments which came into effect for Oxford City Council tenants on the 15 September 2014.

Oxford City Council tenancies created before 15 September 2014

A secure tenancy allows certain people the right to take over a tenancy when a tenant dies. They are:

A Spouse or Civil Partner

A spouse or civil partner (of either sex), must have occupied the property as their only or principal home at the time of the tenant's death. This means the tenant and the partner had completed a religious or civil ceremony of marriage.

Relatives including blood and step relatives (but not cousins) and a partner living together with the tenant but who had not completed a religious or civil marriage ceremony

The tenancy must have started before  15 September 2014 and the family member must have resided with the tenant as their only or principal home continuously for the 12 months immediately prior to the tenant's death. The twelve-month period need not have been in the same property, e.g. the tenant was transferred by Oxford City Council or mutually exchanged tenancies.


  • There can only be one successor to a tenancy
  • A spouse or civil partnerwill take precedence over a family member where more than one person is entitled to succeed
  • If the tenant was a successor, there is no further right to succeed
  • A succession will also have been created by an assignment to a person qualified to succeed
  • Mutual Exchanges are not succession unless the tenant was a successor in relation to the tenancy being assigned by way of exchange (s88 (3) 1985 Act).

Oxford City Council tenancies created from 15 September 2014

Only a spouse, civil partner or a partner living with the tenant as a husband or wife or civil partner may succeed to the tenancy.


What happens if there is no one eligible to take over a tenancy?

If there is no one eligible to succeed under law the tenancy will come to an end.

Anyone living in the property would have to leave.

However, it is our policy to consider whether a new tenancy should be offered to certain remaining relatives who would have succeeded if there had not been a previous succession. For example the adult child of a tenant whose tenancy started before 15 September 2014.

The decision will be made based on the criteria within the Oxford City Council Allocations Policy.The applicant  would have no right to remain in the property, but may be offered alternative appropriate accommodation. For example a one bed flat if they were on their own.

The proposed successor or applicant for alternative accommodation should contact the Tenancy Management team as soon as possible following the death of the tenant to ensure their application may be considered. Contact the team on 01865 249811.



Page last updated 17 July 2015

Tenancy Management Team

St Aldate's Chambers

109 St Aldate's



01865 252372

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