Domestic violence tenancy laws

From 28 February 2019, changes to tenancy laws allow tenants who need to escape circumstances of domestic violence to end their tenancy immediately and without penalty.

Victims do not need to apply to NCAT

Victims of domestic violence do not need to apply to NCAT to end the tenancy. 

The tenant will need to give their landlord or agent a domestic violence termination notice and attach one of the acceptable forms of evidence. Evidence includes a declaration made by a medical practitioner, such as a GP.

The tenant will also need to give a copy of the domestic violence termination notice to any remaining co-tenants.

Victims should contact NSW Fair Trading on 13 23 20 for advice on how to serve and what to include with a domestic violence termination notice.

Landlords and remaining co-tenants

A landlord or any remaining co-tenants can apply to the NCAT if they are given a domestic violence termination notice. 

For information about the rights of landlords or remaining co-tenants where a tenancy is terminated in circumstances of domestic violence please contact NSW Fair Trading.

Protections for victims of domestic violence

NCAT has developed a protocol to protect victims of domestic violence. The protocol ensures an application to NCAT about a domestic violence termination notice is:

  • assessed for urgency, and
  • listed for hearing in a way that safeguards participants and their privacy. 

Victims should contact NCAT before the hearing if they are concerned for their safety or the safety of their dependent children.  For more information please refer to the NCAT Domestic Violence Protocol [PDF 97kB].

For information about other protections for victims of domestic under the tenancy laws please contact NSW Fair Trading.

Legislation that applies

Residential Tenancies Act 2010 
Residential Tenancies Regulation 2010