Loss of Homes and Evictions across Europe
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Loss of Homes and Evictions across Europe

A Comparative Legal and Policy Examination

Edited by Padraic Kenna, Sergio Nasarre-Aznar, Peter Sparkes and Christoph U. Schmid

The loss of a home can lead to major violations of a person’s dignity and human rights. Yet, evictions take place everyday in all countries across Europe. This book provides a comparative assessment of human rights, administrative, procedural and public policy norms, in the context of eviction, across a number of European jurisdictions. Through this comparison the book exposes the emergence of consistent, Europe-wide standards and norms.
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Chapter 8: Evictions in Poland

Witold Borysiak

Abstract

In Poland, the number of eviction cases resolved by the courts remains at a relatively stable level. According to judgments by the Constitutional Court, eviction without any adequate alternative housing or its adequate replacement (‘eviction to nowhere’) is prohibited and is considered unconstitutional. The municipality in which the property to be vacated is located, is obliged to identify available temporary lodging, shelters or other places of accommodation, where the debtor can stay following eviction. There is also a special form of legal protection for vulnerable groups of tenants, for instance pregnant women or minors. These vulnerable groups have the right to be evicted to a second accommodation. Owners, who cannot reclaim their property because of the lack of social housing, have a right to compensation. The main reason for evictions in Poland is adverse economic circumstances, which leads tenants and owners to rent and mortgage arrears. Other reasons for eviction include breaches of tenancy, terms, or psychosocial vulnerabilities (such as alcohol or drug addiction). Key structural risk factors leading to eviction are poverty and unemployment. Moreover, Poland lacks a system of solutions to support municipalities that would give adequate access to social housing for those entitled to it. The existing solutions are insufficient in relation to citizens’ needs.

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