Squatting and the law

Squatting in non-residential properties

A non-residential property is any building or land that is not designed to be lived in.

Simply being on another person’s non-residential property without their permission is not usually a crime. The police can take action if squatters commit other crimes when entering or staying in a property.

Crimes include:

  • causing damage when entering the property
  • causing damage while in the property
  • not leaving when they’re told to by a court
  • stealing from the property
  • using utilities like electricity or gas without permission
  • fly-tipping
  • not obeying a noise abatement notice

Contact the police if you see someone breaking into or damaging property.