Statutory guidance

Anti-social behaviour powers

Guidance on the powers that the police, local authorities and other local agencies can use to tackle antisocial behaviour.



Everyone has the right to feel safe in their own homes and neighbourhoods. The Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014 aims to put victims first, giving power to local people and enabling professionals to find the best solutions for their local area.

The act provides the police, local authorities and other local agencies with flexible tools and powers that they can use to respond quickly and effectively to antisocial behaviour.

These include:

  • civil injunctions
  • criminal behaviour orders
  • public spaces protection orders
  • community protection notices
  • dispersal powers
  • closure powers

The act also includes measures such as the Community Remedy and anti-social behaviour case reviews which empower victims and communities to have a say in the outcome of their reports and hold agencies to account.

The antisocial behaviour measures in this act are contained in parts 1 to 6.

Part 1 – Injunctions

This is a purely civil injunction, available in the county court for adults and the youth court for 10 to 17 year olds. It allows a wide range of agencies, including the police, local councils and social landlords to deal quickly with antisocial individuals, nipping behaviour in the bud before it escalates.

Part 2 – Criminal behaviour orders

This is available following a conviction for any criminal offence and can address the underlying causes of the behaviour through new, positive requirements. Breach is a criminal offence with a maximum penalty of up to 5 years in prison for adults. It demonstrates to the offender and the community the seriousness of the breach.

Part 3 – Dispersal powers

This enables officers to require a person who has committed, or is likely to commit, antisocial behaviour to leave a specified area and not return for up to 48 hours.

Part 4 – Community protection notices

This part is split into 3 chapters covering community protection notices, public spaces protection orders and closure orders. These new powers are faster, more effective and available to more agencies to use to tackle a whole range of place-specific antisocial and criminal behaviour.

Part 5 – Recovery of possession of dwelling-houses: antisocial behaviour grounds

Antisocial behaviour can have a negative impact on neighbourhoods and communities. Social landlords have a key role in tackling antisocial behaviour. Provisions in the Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act introduced a ground for possession to speed up the process in the most serious cases of antisocial behaviour bringing faster relief to victims and communities.

Part 6 – Local involvement and accountability

The Community Remedy gives victims of low-level crime and antisocial behaviour a say in the punishment of the offender out of court, whilst the anti-social behaviour case review gives victims of persistent antisocial behaviour the right to demand action where they feel that their problems have not been dealt with.

Published 9 May 2013
Last updated 27 March 2023 + show all updates
  1. Revised guidance published.

  2. Added Welsh translation of the Anti-social behaviour powers PDF.

  3. Added a link to the ASB principles page.

  4. Update includes guidance on non-crime hate incidents.

  5. Updated guidance. Now includes Expedited Public Spaces Protection Orders, which are intended to protect the public from harm that some protests in the vicinity of schools, vaccination centres and NHS Test & Trace (T&T) sites in England or Test, Trace, Protect (TTP) sites in Wales cause.

  6. Added a link to best practice from the Local Government Association.

  7. Updated guidance to January 2021 edition.

  8. Welsh translation added.

  9. Guidance updated with link to new guidance on the Community Trigger.

  10. Updated reform of anti-social behaviour powers: statutory guidance for frontline professionals.

  11. Updated anti-social behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014 statutory guidance for frontline professionals guidance.

  12. Information notes on Japanese knotweed, noise neighbours, public and open spaces, and young people published.

  13. 'Reform of anti-social behaviour powers: statutory guidance for frontline professionals' published.

  14. Fact sheets updated.

  15. Guidance added.

  16. First published.