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RTB Enforcement Policy

The Board may pursue court proceedings where parties fail to comply with its Order. Decisions on whether or not to pursue legal enforcement are made on a case-by-case basis, taking into account the Board’s own limited resources, the cost of taking legal proceedings and the likely success of achieving a favourable outcome for the requester.


There is no legal obligation on the Board to enforce its orders; however it does so in various cases. The Board endeavours to secure enforcement initially by non-judicial means by writing to the non-compliant parties to remind them of the terms of the Order and requiring them to make arrangements to comply. If this approach is unsuccessful, then the criteria the Board have regard to in making a decision whether or not to pursue legal proceedings, include the following:

  • Dispute type
  • History of compliance with landlord/tenant legislation
  • Technical strength of the case
  • What contact/steps, if any, the person seeking compliance has taken with the non-compliant party to obtain compliance of the Order
  • Existing representations made by the RTB to the non-compliant party and relevant information obtained
  • Geographical location
  • Particular circumstances of the case
  • Value for money evaluation
  • Maximum of three cases per person per annum may be sanctioned
  • Enforcement sanctioned only on a final outcome of all matters under dispute (e.g. if a notice of termination is invalid and a new one is required to be served, then requests for enforcement of rent arrears will not be considered in isolation to a final outcome of all matters in dispute)
  • If a party is as, or better, able to enforce than the RTB then they will be expected to undertake their own enforcement
  • Overall number of cases sanctioned for enforcement will be limited to available budget in any given year
  • The extent of the non-compliant party's co-operation in seeking to discharge the debt; regard will be had to whether the party has made reasonable efforts to resolve the matter
  • Any other circumstances pertaining where the RTB considers it inappropriate that the resources available should be used in a particular case

Parties can take their own enforcement and the Board will assist any party by providing copies of all necessary documentation within the control of the RTB. The RTB cannot take enforcement in all cases so parties in many cases will, inevitably, have to pursue their own enforcement